Summary: The matter of destiny is something we can’t afford to treat lightly. We must carefully evaluate what our destiny choices mean, both for today and for the future and ultimately eternity.
IS THIS YOUR TIME?
Luke 19:44 “…you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you.”
You may have seen the commercials about quitting smoking where the interviewee says, “I talked to my doctor and now I see quitting in a whole new way. It was my time to quit.” Similarly we have our times of revelation, whether it’s time to go back to school, take a new job, diet and exercise or other similar awakenings. The enemy to any of these kairos moments is procrastination which can prove harmless, rewarding or fatal, depending on the situation.
Is this your time…
-- For God to give you a new shape? That can apply to physical realities though that’s not where I’m going!
-- To move from ‘out of shape’ appetites to an explosive experience of God that will ‘rock’ your world?!
I caution you that you might have fun; you could start dancing before the mornings out! You may actually look forward to getting up tomorrow! Your time could lead to obsessive bouts of inexpressible joy and happiness where you can’t control outbursts of good deeds just for the fun of it!
Your story could change and be the result of an overriding theme outlined in Luke 19. It is the experience of Christ’s Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem, an image of a greater reality which is the triumphal entry of Christ into your life. Yes, I know you’re already a “Christian” but I’m suggesting you can experience something in your walk with God that you’ve been missing for a long time or maybe never yet experienced.
The Triumphal Entry of Jesus actually starts in Jericho with Zacchaeus. It never started on a donkey outside the city of Jerusalem. It began with Zacchaeus and likely involved many other people along the way. As we explore this fascinating story one of the first lessons we pick up on is the principle that
1. WE CHOOSE OUR DESTINY!
Sometimes we choose by not consciously making choices. The news a week ago told the story of a 62-year-old grandmother who was 51 kilometers over the speed limit hitting 131kms/hour in an 80 km/hour speed zone! The new laws in Canada for speeders over 50 km/hour are stiff. This grandmother’s case is being reviewed. Somehow the law thinks it’s not as dangerous for a 62 year-old as it is for a 20 year-old to be racing 50 kilometres over the speed limit! Somehow age makes a difference. Now this grandmother wasn’t intentionally racing through the zone. She was simply trying to pass a semi or tractor-trailer. It doesn’t change the fact however that she unconsciously chose the outcomes of breaking the law.
My dad told me on countless occasions, “look out for your health now. Don't do what I did.” He would tell you that he didn’t practice good health habits and health care thirty years ago and is now paying the price for those choices. He didn’t decide, “I’ll eat what I want and so what that my health will pay for it thirty years from now.”
Sometimes we unconsciously choose our destiny.
The matter of destiny is something we can’t afford to treat lightly. We must carefully evaluate what our destiny choices mean, both for today and for the future and ultimately eternity.
Jesus gives us two pictures of what choosing destiny looks like. There are only two choices. The first is through a man named Zacchaeus who serves as an example of embracing God’s personal visit – Luke 19:1-5…
Was Jesus passing through Jericho on his way to Jerusalem just to meet up with Zacchaeus? His purpose in Jerusalem seventeen miles from Jericho was to mount a donkey, a sign that he declared himself the King, coming in peace. It was a public statement pushing the envelope of his Messiah message, that he is God’s Son, where before he played it down. But now is the time for full exposure. On the way did he just happened to be passing through Jericho and just happen to pass the sycamore tree just at that moment when Zacchaeus was heading to the office and just happened to stop and watch the parade? I think not. I believe Jesus’ life and ministry was always intentional, and today’s divine appointment included Zacchaeus!
Zacchaeus is your Revenue Canada tax-agent but not typically so. He collected taxes from his Jewish counterparts to feed the Roman dictatorship. Not only that, he generated his own agenda as he levied excessive charges on top of the standard taxes for his profiteering addictions.
This opportunist is confronted with a life-altering opportunity. Little does he know it could be his only chance at change, that the call may only come once. Blind to that possibility, he responds! – (Read 19:6…)
The Triumphal Entry continues as Jesus moves from Zacchaeus’ home invasion to share a parable, an example of the other alternative which is rejecting God’s personal visit – Luke 19:11-27. The destiny choice in this parable is based on true historical facts. Herod the Great, who died in 4 B.C., had divided the Roman kingdom between Herod Antipas, Herod Philip and Archelaus. This division had to be approved by the Romans of course so Archelaus pressed Augustus to allow him to enter into his inheritance. The Jews, learning of this, sent 50 men to Rome to reject his kingship over them. Archelaus received his inheritance but without a kingship title. The people knew all this and this would quickly come to mind as Jesus told the parable. As Jesus highlights the Jews’ rejection of Archelaus as king, he prophetically offers the suggestion that Jerusalem will do the same with him. Jesus parallels this coming reality with an historical fact. In this parable Jesus highlights two of the king’s subjects receiving his message, embracing his purpose and as a result being rewarded and applauded by their king.