Lenten Devotion – Conquering Through Love
Friday, March 18
Luke 19:28-40, 45-48
The great hymn Ride On, Ride On in Majesty – composed by Graham George in 1913, based on the hymn tune The King’s Majesty, composed by Henry Milman (1791-1868) – beautifully illustrates Luke’s text for this week: Jesus rides into Jerusalem on a borrowed colt, to acclamation from crowds along the way.
This scripture reveals starkly contrasting images. The first image shows Jesus making a humble entrance into Jerusalem, not as a conquering Roman emperor might, with horsedrawn chariots and full entourage of centurions. Instead Jesus enters Jerusalem in a most unassuming way, on the back of a borrowed colt. Even under these modest circumstances, the people of Jerusalem recognized His power and came out to praise Him.
Jesus offers a message here for us as Christians. Instead of conquering the world through powerful armies, like the Romans, He came into the world to reconcile the world through Christ. His message of love and grace to all people, not just the elites, was a paradigm shift for the mores of his day.
We can learn that reconciling the world sometimes requires upsetting the norm. Other times it requires quietly reaching out to others in love and acceptance. As Christians, we can find many ways to offer witness to our faith.
Prayer: Lord, help us to be loving witness to our faith as Christians. May we have the discernment to be bold in our witness when required and to be gentle when needed.
– Kathleen Burger-Gerada