Devotional: A Mistaken Celebration
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16. This is the simple, beautiful message of the Gospel, the Good News. We might have heard that verse a thousand times. But do we ever stop to celebrate what it means? Matthew 21:7-11 shows us that people – even Christians – often celebrate what they don’t fully understand. The world elevates Jesus and then diminishes Him in the same breath. Even Christians struggle with crowning Jesus as THE Lord and King. This is because “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” If “cancel culture” shows us anything, it’s that everyone is guilty and in need of a Savior. But Jesus Christ left His place of Glory, came to the earth as a baby born in a stable, lived a perfect life, was crucified on the cross, and then was raised from death to life. Why? So that anyone who is “guilty” can be declared “not guilty” if they believe in Him. Jesus died so that we can know his overcoming power, so that we would never walk alone, and so that we can experience the perfect love between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Questions for Meditation
- Whether its traditions, promotions, relationships, sports teams, or anything else, what things do you celebrate in your own life? How do these compare to Jesus dying on the cross to take away your guilt and save you from judgment?
- Read Matthew 21:8. Whether it’s now or in the past, are you moved to celebrate Jesus because of what He has done for you, or did you find yourself just being part of the crowd?
- Society is quick to “cancel” and “ban” anyone who makes certain mistakes. Is anyone good enough to deserve Jesus’ salvation? What do we deserve for the ways we have sinned against God and grieved Him? Why do we need a Savior?
- Why does the crowd praise Jesus as “Son of David” and “Lord” in Matthew 21:9, but then diminish Him to being only a “prophet” in verse 11? Why does the world have a problem with crowning Jesus as Lord and King?
- If you are honest, have you crowned Jesus as THE Lord and THE King in every single area of your life or have you diminished Him to being just a “good teacher” or “prophet” whose opinions you can just take or leave? Or are there areas where you have left Him out because you are ashamed of what is there or because you think you can be a better King than He is?
- Have you ever been let down by things, experiences or people that you really thought would fulfill you and make you happy? Read Romans 6:10-11. Who does God send to live within you when you believe on Jesus Christ for your salvation? Does this same Spirit have to power to heal you, free you, fulfill you and fill your life with the joy of the Lord?