Summary: During the Triumphant entry, people were stirred up to the point of being shaken, but were they changed? How does this speak to us?!?!
Stirred but Not Changed
* This is one of the most ‘well-known pre-Easter’ stories in scripture. Fulfilling the prophecy, our Lord Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey with pomp and circumstance befitting a King. People lined the road, took off their coats laying them in the path, waving palm-branches, and crying “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna.”
* Dr. Luke records that the singing and praising reached such a fever pitch of the traditional church leaders wanted it quieted and quieter. Yet, we read in the HCSB that the city was ‘shaken.’ KJV translators, who were a good bit more sedate, says the city was ‘moved.’ The NIV uses the word “stirred” while the ESV reads “stirred up.” The Greek word is the root for our word “seismic.” Jesus’ entrance, whether a planet, a place, or a person, is always seismic! But never forget, for Jesus, shaking, stirring, and moving are not enough (it is only the beginning). The same people who lined road with calls of “Praise Him” at the beginning of the week were stirred up by the Pharisees in front of Pilate’s hall by week’s end to shout cries of “Slay Him.” They were stirred but not changed.
* This past week we have had a “stirring event.” The music, messages, and meetings, stirred our hearts, but the question is, “Were we changed?”
* Consider 3 ways to discern the change which only Jesus can give:
1. HEAD – The head is the control center of each one of us and represents our ‘mind’. For the person who has been changed, it is a transformation of the mind! Romans 12:2 says, “Be not conformed to the world, but the transformed by the ‘renewing’ of your mind.” The change is indeed a renewal, a renovation, and/or a makeover!! For the person who is changed it begins in the minds, the Holy Spirit creates in us a conscious. Philippians 2:5 speaks our having the mind of Christ and that what it means to be changed. Illus: thought life, concepts, etc.
2. HABITS - are the great killers of a passionate spiritual life. Candidly, bad habits are between you and God what Adultery is between you and your mate. If you come to Christ with ingrained habits, He will meet you where you are. In fact, did you know “that is exactly how God wants you to come?” Never “clean up to come to God, come to God to get cleaned up,” is this why we sing, “Just as I am”. Habits in a life are generally what controls life. Examples are smoking, drinking, drugs, and pornography. We ask, do “bad habits mean I am not saved?” if you are “stirred but not changed,” going back to those habits will be easy because you’ll have no Holy Spirit to assist. However, if we are indeed changed, the Holy Spirit will become our conscience.
Stirred But Not Change – Pg 2
* This is the reason Paul writes to Timothy about a “seared” conscience. Never forget, sinful habits will destroy your joy, peace, security, ability to share Christ. (TCAAH) If you have a sinful habit present in your life there are two possibilities; first – the person is not saved, or there exists a seared conscience.
3. HEART – Our heart is a dead giveaway. We will never rise above what is locked away in our heart. Let’s check out the heart.
a. The Contents of the heart. – Make no mistake, people know what is in your heart, it is the most transparencies of your personality. There are so many scriptures which speak about our heart. Out of the heart the mouth speaks, out of the overflow of the heart flows the issues of life, and as a man thinks in his heart, so is he. The Old Testament tells us that our natural heart, the unregenerate heart, is deceitful. Candidly, you and I have no power to change our heart, it takes a professional.
b. The Cautions about the heart. – A bad heart is bad news. Probably not a one of us have been excluded from having a friend or loved one (or self) being found with a bad or diseased heart. When a heart goes bad, the person KNOWS something has to be done because it is impossible to live without a working heart. In the same way, to be stirred and not changed is to have a heart that is bad, diseased, and deceitful. The bad heart carries an eternal death sentence.
c. The Comfort from the heart. – There is little which brings us comfort like an EKG or a treadmill which tells us that our heart is healthy. Since 1974, I have stood beside the bed of many who have just come through heart surgery. In the first couple of days, there is much pain, even agony, but after the affects of being cut opened heal, most people say they feel better than they have felt in years. This is exactly what happens when our hearts are transformed by the renewing of Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:17 tells us about the threefold work of God in our life and that work begins with “transformation.”
It’s not enough to be stirred, or shaken, it is required that our hearts be changed.