“Go your way into the village over against you: and as soon as ye be entered into it, ye shall find a colt tied, whereon never man sat; loose him, and bring him.” Mark 11:2
With a defiant dignity, you chose to enter into this tragic day with at least one servant set aside for your purposes alone. The contrast was missed then and now. A silent, humble donkey carries you haltingly as loud voices shout, “The King is Coming!” Not the King of their lives, but the King who would give them everything they wanted in their vain lusts and desires for themselves. I am not unlike them.
Jeremiah warned that Israel should serve Babylon’s Nebuchadnezzar. All the prophets and priests understood your promises to Israel differently. They all said such a thing could not be from your lips, to put Israel under the yoke of her enemy. They did not need to listen for your voice because they owned your voice in their presumptuous understandings.
You have made so many promises to Israel. Anyone today, with the available concordances and access to your every word could easily make the case that you were headed to a throne. Indeed, both the common man and your intimate disciples understood your reign to soon be in place. I am trembling. Like the heathen, we fashion a god of our own choosing.
“And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when he had looked round about upon all things, and now the eventide was come, he went out unto Bethany with the twelve.” Mark 11:11
The Priests, scribes and elders come. But they do not come to listen, and you do not speak.
My precious Lover, I want to be here to listen, open my ears. Lift me into your lap. Send me into your fields.
Did tears stream down Your face? Or were the wounds too deep? I shout with them, “my redemption draws near, the end of my toils is soon.” It isn’t you I long for, but peace and safety.
Were you searching for someone who understood? Was your survey a horror of disappointment everywhere you looked. Did you see the now inevitable fall of Jerusalem that day, see the temple dismantled stone by stone as you looked on? Your nation scattered and oppressed for centuries. Did you think, “If only you would listen, hear, how much I love you,” as you rode through the streets?
Do you feel the same as you walk among the candlesticks in Rev 2,3? Do you feel the same when I wake up without thought of you?
“And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry:” Mark 11:12
They welcomed you as King, but offered no feast? No one invited you in? Are you hungry as you stand outside the door of the church in Rev 3, and promise you will eat with anyone who opens the door to you?
I always feel so disconnected from society, from the church. Not sure why. Safer maybe. With you I feel both very unsafe and ever-so safe. You frighten me because I am unfaithful, unloving, yet the magic of your presence presses in. I never hunger if I come to your table. Why does it take discipline?
I want your hunger to be satisfied. But is there any fruit here for you?
“And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find any thing thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet.” Mark11:13
Even from a distance does your heart hope as I appear to be vibrant with leaves? Up close I am barren and your hope embittered. Fruit only grows as we abide in you. Nail me tightly to the cross. Save me from my wicked coldness. Curse me not!
“And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away.” Mark11:21
I’ve always puzzled at your response. This morning it seems that even in these days of your bitter disappointment with Israel, even though she would be set aside and broken for so many centuries, you knew that would not be her ultimate end. She was yours, and she would yet be yours. As I am yours. I fail, and am more than worthy to be cursed and wither away. But your purposes will not be undone, though for a time, set aside and withered. “With God, all things are possible” you promise me, a once but not forever withered tree.