Happy Tuesday everyone!
My prayer is that you all are doing well today and that ABBA has been speaking to your heart in some way, shape or form.
Last week, our beloved brother, Kelly shared with us lessons he gleaned from Jesus’ entrance into Bethany via a donkey (see Matthew 21:1-11, Luke 19:28-40, Mark 11:1-10, John 12:12-15 and Zechariah 9:9). We were reminded of Christ’s omniscience through the specific instructions He gave to two disciples that were sent on a mission in preparation for the final week before His death. Kelly highlighted that not only did Jesus have specific knowledge of where the donkey was, but he showed us how Jesus addressed all the details concerning the upcoming transaction regarding the acquisition of the animal, the questions the disciples would be asked and the response they should give. Our Master in His instruction did not leave any detail out. Additionally, while He was riding the donkey He maintained His posture of being purposeful. He knew He had an assignment to complete in a few days and so He would not allow His Father’s purpose to be thwarted simply because of receiving attention from those around. He kept His mind on the mission, and continued about His Father’s business. Kelly challenged us to do the same. We were encouraged to ensure we have our priorities straight, just like Jesus did then.
What a woooorrrddd!!!
Dawn, will blog on Part 3 of this topic/text next on April 28th. Stay tuned.
The above being said, I want us today to now put our focus on the donkey, the lowly beast.
Observations of the donkey
No one want to be a donkey. Pull a class of pre-schoolers and ask at animal they would want to be one and you may hear they say: a lion, a cheetah, a tiger, even a bear. Not one would desire to be a donkey. Ask grown ups the same question and I’m sure the response would be similar. In fact, if one of us is compared to being a donkey we would be greatly offended.
As we saw above, Jesus had a mission that He needed to fulfill. The Bible is replete with OT prophesies that all point to Jesus and the work He would be doing, not just on the cross, but through events leading to the point of redemption. One such prophecy we find, is in Zechariah 9:9.
“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”
Jesus fulfilled this particular prophecy to a tee! He didn’t even leave the donkey out.
As I considered this text, it’s easy to overlook the significance of the donkey because we are so focused on Jesus’ fulfilling the prophecy (which is important by the way) but how about we pause for a moment and analyze the life, if you may of this donkey.
- In the text, we see that the donkey was tied up. Jesus sent direction to have it loosed.
- This donkey was left alone by its master for whatever reason. Jesus came and gave it purpose. Whenever this story of Jesus entering Bethany is recounting, be sure the donkey will not be left out.
- During this time (and maybe even now), a donkey’s only significance was to carry load. Those of affluence did not ride on a donkey as part of their showcase, in fact, both military personnel and those of royal descents rode on horses. Jesus gave this beast of burden prominence and prestige. It carried the King of all kings.
- Donkey are stubborn creatures. Once they set their minds to do something, they go about it with disregard for anything/anyone else.
- Lastly, this donkey would have existed temporarily but look at how it fulfilled a great divine mandate.
Lessons from the donkey
All of us at some point in time were held in the captivity of sin. We were in bondage. The adversary had not just our feet shackled, but also our minds, our hearts, our very souls. Through Jesus, we, like the donkey have been set free. We have been delivered from so many issues. We have been given freedom (where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty). He has sent and continues to send His Word to us either through the pages of scripture, or through His servants.
There are times, we are left alone and isolated by those who we give credence to. In some way, their actions (or inactions) towards us have left us feeling bound, isolated, alone, not needed, abandoned. Jesus though, comes to our rescue and makes use of us. Holy Spirit (the treasure) enters our hearts which acts as a guarantee that is a reminder to us that we will never be forsaken.
Many of us will never have global platforms. Our only audience may be here (or in our small circle). This does not mean we are unimportant or insignificant. We can still work for Jesus in some way, even in the background. In fact, the work behind the scene has great significance. Had the donkey not been around, how would scripture have been fulfilled? How would our Messiah have entered Bethany?
When Christ gives us an assignment, let us be “stubborn” to follow through. Irregardless of the oppositions or the distractions, let us walk in obedience, even to the point of death, as our Master did.
Finally, we though existing in this temporary world are not temporary beings. Like Abraham, we live to enter a city whose builder and make is God. We are placed on earth to fulfill a divine mandate, whatever this is. We are expected to operate in a way that keeps our focus on the eternal.
So, have you found any other lessons from the donkey? Feel free to share in the comments section below.