The Last Chapter – Week of November 29, 2021
Rejoice greatly, daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
“Come on, mom! Just one more chapter! Bookmarks are for quitters!” This is usually how our family bedtime read-aloud sessions conclude. We all want to read just. . . . one. . .more chapter because we want can’t wait to see what happens next. We want to know how the story ends.
One author describes the Bible as a love story written by God for the whole world. The main character is Jesus, and he is seen on every page, in every chapter, in every verse. Even though the book of Zechariah was written long before Jesus was born, on those pages we see some details of Jesus’ final days on earth. On what we now call “Palm Sunday”, Jesus rode into the city of Jerusalem on a young colt, one that had never been ridden. As he rode into town, people showed that they loved and honored him by shouting praises, waving palm branches, and placing garments and palm branches on the road before him. Our King had come! What a humble way for our King to come into town.
As the Christmas season approaches, we remember how humbly Jesus entered into the world. The hero of the Bible, God’s love story, was born in a small town and in a room where animals had lived. Some of the first people to ever see him were not wealthy or highly educated—but were instead poor shepherds. God allowed himself to be humbled when he became man and lived with us. Our King had come!
Our King also forgives. In the Bible we hear story after story about all the people that have disobeyed, mocked, or turned away from God. People fail. No one can escape sin. But our King also forgives us, over and over and over. He wants us to see our sin, repent, and feel the comfort of his grace and forgiveness.
And there’s still another chapter! Don’t put the book down yet! Remember all the shouting on Palm Sunday? Jesus will come again, and everyone will shout his name. This day will be the final, complete fulfillment of all promises God made in his love story. We will see our King! We rejoice here on earth while we wait for his victorious return. We shout praises to His name in full confidence that we know how this story ends.
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Redeemer, come! I open wide my heart to you; here, Lord abide!
Oh, enter with your saving grace; show me your kind and friendly face.
Your Holy Spirit guide us on until our glorious goal is won.
Eternal praise and fame we offer to your name. Amen