Summary: It is crucial that we recognize and accept Jesus as God’s Lamb, our Eternal Spiritual Messiah, and not just our Temporal Helper.
A lady was visiting an art museum when she turned to the curator and pointed at the wall. "I suppose you call this hideous looking thing modern art." He said, "No, Ma’am. Actually we call it a mirror!" The point of the story is that sometimes something can become too familiar to us; so familiar, in fact, that we tend not to recognize it’s true nature; even when we are looking right at it!
That’s what we see in our passage today. Here is God Himself in the flesh clearly making His identity known to everyone (riding on the Donkey fulfills one of the main prophecies concerning the coming of the Messiah in Zechariah 9:9 (quickview) ); yet because of their hopes and expectations for a different kind of Messiah/King, they didn’t recognize who He really was and why He had really come.
Have you ever seen ”Trading Spaces?” I love these shows (“While You Were Out”). Usually the people are happy with the remodeling done on Trading Spaces, but not always. Sometimes they hate it and it isn’t long before they tear it all down. One lady was so upset she just fussed and cried like a baby.
That’s what we see in this passage. I’ve always been amazed at how the Jews could so happily welcome their Messiah on Sunday only to cry out for His crucifixion by Thursday. What happened? How could they change so quickly? The answer lies in the fact that they were not getting the Messiah they thought they were getting; the One they wanted and were expecting and hoping for.
How about us? Have we gotten the Messiah we wanted; The One we were expecting? Or have we accepted The One God has sent that we need?
Recently a "Husband Shopping Center" opened in Dallas, where women could choose a husband from among many men. It was laid out with five floors with the men increasing in positive attributes as you ascended up the floors. The only rule was once you opened the door to any floor, you must choose a man from that floor. Also, if you went up a floor, you couldn’t go back down except to leave never to return.
A couple of girlfriends went there to find men. On the first floor door was a sign saying, "These men have jobs and love kids." The women said, "Well, that’s better than not having jobs, or not loving kids, but I wonder what’s further up?" so up they went. The second floor said, "These men have high-paying jobs, love kids, and are extremely good-looking." "Hmmm," they said. "But I wonder what’s further up?" The third floor sign read: "These men have high-paying jobs, are extremely good-looking, love kids and help with the housework." "Wow!" they said. "Very tempting, BUT there’s more further up!" and up they went. On the fourth floor: "These men have high-paying jobs, love kids, are extremely good-looking, help with the housework, and have a strong romantic streak." "Oh, mercy! But just think what must be awaiting us further on!" So up to fifth floor they went. The sign on that floor said, "This floor is empty and exists only to prove that women are impossible to please."