Sunday, December 14, 2014

Jesus in Control of His Life

The last time I talked about Jesus' last week in Jerusalem, I left the Temple authorities in an awful pickle. By riding into Jerusalem on a donkey, Jesus had seemingly claimed to be the king referred to by the prophet Zechariah (9:9), 
" Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Lo, your king comes to you;
triumphant and victorious is he,
humble and riding on an ass,
on a colt the foal of an ass."
Or so the crowd of Galilean Jews traveling with him understood it. The Roman authorities didn't seem to understand the implications of their rejoicing, or didn't take it seriously (and who would take a man riding a donkey seriously?). But the Temple authorities were alarmed. And they would have arrested Jesus, except he was constantly surrounded by the Galilean Jews, until he retired for the evening to Bethany, too far for their reach. 
Their only hope was to somehow catch him alone. But how? Unless he was a complete fool, Jesus understood their predicament. Which is why we should understand the significance of his decision to have his last supper in Jerusalem, with only his closest disciples around, and then to wait in a secluded garden just outside the walls of Jerusalem. Clearly, Jesus was knowingly giving his enemies the opportunity that they had wanted to catch him alone.
The conclusion seems obvious: Jesus is the one who has been in control of the events surrounding his life for this last week. No one has caught him by surprise. He knew the danger of being alone, and made himself available, and then waited for the inevitable to happen.

No comments: