March 06, 2008

The Tears of Jesus

Luke 19:41-44

As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it …
Luke 19:41


While the people shouted their hosannas, Jesus began to weep. This was not just a quiet brushing away of a tear. The original biblical text suggests that Jesus uttered loud cries, suggestive of a soul in deep agony. It was the kind of weeping that accompanies deep grief, as in hearing news of the tragic death of a loved one.

But Jesus does not weep for himself. The Bible tells us, “As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it and said, ‘If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes.’”

In this lament Jesus reflected the grief of his divine Father. Already in Genesis we read that “the LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain” (Genesis 6:6). The heart of Jesus was also filled with pain because his people didn’t understand that he had come to bring them peace with God and with each other.

Today there are still many people who don’t understand who can ultimately bring them peace. Our reading says that the people in Jesus’ day “did not recognize the time of God’s coming” to them.

Do you recognize that God approaches you today in Jesus Christ? Do you shout “Hosanna,” knowing that Jesus is the one and only Savior?

Thank you, Jesus, for revealing the way our unbelief grieves your heart of love. May we praise and thank you for your great salvation, and live each day for you. Amen.

About the author — Jerry Hoytema

Pastor Jerry Hoytema is a retired minister living in Ontario. In his retirement he has served several churches as an interim pastor. He and his wife, Winnie, have four children and 13 grandchildren.

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