Right now it is the season to celebrate the coming of Jesus to earth as a baby. Here’s what I am observing in the crowds coming to Christmas Eve services at our church. Many come to merely see what the church will do to celebrate Jesus out of curiosity. Many come because they feel guilty if they don’t come and sit by mamma at church for at least once a year.
Some people come because of all the “feels” that commercialism, with the constant playing of classic Christmas songs, brings to hearts…so you will buy their products. Some might come to see how the church will gift them. Some people come from other churches to see a performance and judge to see if it was better than what their church has to offer.
But, then there are those seeking to fill a hole in their hearts. They come wondering if Jesus is who many say He is. They are drawn to come in but don’t realize why until they get there. They hear God’s Word speak directly into their hearts because of the power of the Holy Spirit that is inviting them to Life. And they respond. Their spiritual address changes because they triumphantly found freedom in Jesus. Broken lives now begin a life of restoration to wholeness. Sadness turns to joy. Worry is depleted. Frowns of fear turn to smiles of assurance because they found the reason for living. They found Jesus!
I think about this as I read and study the crowd who welcomed Jesus into the city of Jerusalem. They shouted praises and blessings to Jesus. Some came to see what He would miraculously do next. Jesus was impressive…as a man, many thought. Some came out of curiosity to see the One everyone was talking about…who raised Lazarus from the dead. The religious elite watched in fear. Jesus knew all their hearts. He knew why they came to see him.
Think about it…Jesus rode victoriously into a city that would be the place He would die for our sins. The crowd praised Him for a few hours. Later they shouted, “Crucify Him”.
Jesus, accused of destroying The Law, came fulfilling God’s Word in every detail…riding on a donkey’s colt. The disciples did not understand at that moment what was going on but they would “get it” later. Jesus knew that God was still in control of the entire mission.
But for right now, “Everyone has gone after Him!”
John 12, New Living Translation
Jesus’ Triumphant Entry
12 The next day, the news that Jesus was on the way to Jerusalem swept through the city. A large crowd of Passover visitors 13 took palm branches and went down the road to meet him. They shouted,
Blessings on the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Hail to the King of Israel!”
14 Jesus found a young donkey and rode on it, fulfilling the prophecy that said:
15 “Don’t be afraid, people of Jerusalem.
Look, your King is coming,
riding on a donkey’s colt.”
16 His disciples didn’t understand at the time that this was a fulfillment of prophecy. But after Jesus entered into his glory, they remembered what had happened and realized that these things had been written about him.
17 Many in the crowd had seen Jesus call Lazarus from the tomb, raising him from the dead, and they were telling others about it. 18 That was the reason so many went out to meet him—because they had heard about this miraculous sign. 19 Then the Pharisees said to each other, “There’s nothing we can do. Look, everyone has gone after him!”
What is our reason for joining the crowds going after Jesus?
Are we merely impressed with Jesus?
Do we worship songs about Him or worship Him?
Feelings change. God does not.
After Christmas is over and all the red and green stuff is put back in the attic, will we still go after Him, the King of kings and Lord of lords with all that is in us?
Oh Lord, help us to be victorious this season as we seek you with all our hearts, minds and souls. To you be all glory. Our lives, saved because of You, now belong to You. Yes, I’m going after you because life is all about You! Teach me. Transform me. Keep me focused on You because my life depends on it!
In Jesus Name, Amen. I believe.