JANUARY 31 READING…Matthew 21
Today we read of Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem…the people cheered Him, and gave Him a greeting for a king. This will begin the week of Christ’s passion. Ironically, it is quite likely that some of these who greater Him with “Hosanna’s” on what is called Palm Sunday, will be part of the group in just a few days crying out “crucify Him!” Jesus is heading for the cross…He told His disciples three different times that this would happen…and it was for this very reason He came into the world. After Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem He went to the Temple and drove out the money changers and thieves. He healed people in the area of the Temple, which incensed the religious leaders. This ought to remind us that a person can wear the garb, have the degrees, hold the position…but if they are not doing the work of God, they are convicted and angry when the see others doing the work of God. The religious leaders questioned Jesus’ authority, and once again He turned the question back on them…when they refused to answer, He refused to answer. Sometimes people don’t want real answers…they just pose ”gotcha” questions to make others look bad. Walk in the wisdom of the Holy Spirit and you will never have to worry about “gotcha” questions.
While Jesus was in the Temple area He began to teach. He uses the withered fig tree to teach about genuine faith…and how powerful it is. He gives the parable of the two sons whose father asks them to go work in the vineyard. The first says yes, but never goes. The second initially says no, but after feeling regret goes. Jesus tells them it was the second who did the will of the father. This should remind us that “lip service” is not doing the will of God…obedience is doing the will of God. He then gave the parable of the wicked Vinedressers. The owner of the vineyard sent messengers to receive his portion of the profit of the vineyard. The Vinedressers beat one, killed one, and stoned the third of the owner’s messengers. So the owner sent his son, thinking surely they would do nothing to his son. But instead they thought if they killed the owner’s son they could have his place. So they killed the son. Jesus used this parable to speak of Himself and the wicked religious leaders who wanted His place. He quotes the Psalms as He presents Himself as the stone rejected by the religious elites and self righteous…who is now the chief cornerstone. No scheme of man, including that of religious leaders, to usurp the plan of God, and replace the Son of God will stand.
Please share your thoughts from today’s reading.
TOMORROW'S READING…Matthew 22