Summary: People will often make claims that are not true to impress you and oftentimes they will betray what their mouths have declared by the things that they do.
Matt. 21:1-11 & Matt. 27:15-18, 20-23
“You Never Know Who Your Friends Really Are”
H Lee Clay
In our text Jesus goes to “Bethphage” (The house of the unripe fig). It was a village on the Mount of Olives on the road from Jerusalem.
He comes to a place that is full of un-ripened people. He seeks to be a blessing by His presence to a people that are not ripe or matured; they are spiritually immature. They’re not fully ready or prepared. If one is to come into what God wants to give them they must first come to a point of maturity to receive what God has for their lives. They must be prepared.
The Lord goes on to command a couple of His disciples to go ahead and bring back the donkey that has been left for the use of the Master. It’s an awesome thing how Jesus would use this donkey as an agent of God’s divine plan.
This is significant because it proves that it does not matter who you are or what you are. What really matters to God is whether He can use you for His glory. There are many able and capable people who claim that they know God that will not serve God and therefore will not be used by God because they have not surrendered themselves to God.
God is not impressed by what you claim or say with your mouth. People will often make claims that are not true to impress you. And oftentimes they will betray what their mouths have declared by the things that they do. What is really in a person is not defined by what they say with their mouths but what is emitted from their hearts.
That’s why you need to start being careful in calling people your friends because the truth of the matter is that not everyone that says good things to you is necessarily an acquaintance that is good for you. Because WHY, YOU KNOW WHO YOUR FRIENDS REALLY ARE!
A real friend is one that will be their for you in thick or thin; in hell or high-water and in good times as well as bad.
A real friend is a person that will contribute to your growth by being truthful to you about you. They won’t cash your pity party checks. They won’t put up with you wanting to go down.
A real friend will push you forward and seek to encourage you to do the right thing. Even at the risk of ticking you off or upsetting you. A real friend won’t front with you but they’ll keep it real with you because a real friend will love you even when you won’t love yourself!
Jesus here is poised on the back of this donkey and is about to make His triumphal entry into the city of Jerusalem as it was declared in the prophecy of Zechariah 9:5, written over 500 years before the birth of Jesus Christ, “Say to the Daughter of Zion, ‘See, your king comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’
Verses 6-7 show how in fact His disciples do exactly as the Master had asked. That’s how you tell whose real for God and who is not real. Those who really love God will obey His Word by doing what he has asked. Obedience to the Word of God is the fruit of genuine faith in God. If He is really the Lord of your life than He is the Master of your will. When Jesus rides into town, a great number of people receive Him with great joy believing that He is
the One that will deliver them from their Roman oppressors. The people receive Him by laying out their coats and palms on the road that he will travel down as an act of respect and shout out, “Hosanna to the Son of David! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the
name of the LORD!’ Hosanna in the highest!” (Lord, save us).
Now the real trip about this text is that most of the folk that were shouting didn’t even know Who Jesus really was. (vs 10-11 “And when He had come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, “Who is this?” So the multitudes said, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee.”
That’s just to show you that oftentimes folk that act like they are your friends will assume things about you when they really don’t even know who you really are. As long as they thought that Jesus would get them out of their jam they cheered for Him.
Oh, but what a difference that a few days can make! On that first Palm Sunday they are blessing His name. But some four days later on that next Thursday night after Jesus was betrayed by a so-called friend named Judas with a kiss for 30 pieces of silver. Some of the very people that claimed they are your friends will sell you out.