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Greatness and how it was achieved

(A) Drawing near to Jerusalem and coming to Bethphage, to the Mount of Olives, Jesus then sent out two disciples, stating to them, “Make your way into the village in front of you and immediately you will come upon a donkey tied, and a colt with her. Untying, bring them to me and if anyone says anything to you, you shall say that, ‘The Lord has need of them,’ and he will send them out immediately.” (B) Now this came to be so that it might fulfill the saying through the prophet, stating, “Say to the daughter of Zion, ‘Look and see, your king is coming to you, humble, and going on a donkey and on a colt, the offspring of a beast of burden.’” And so, as the disciples made their way doing as Jesus appointed, they led the donkey and the colt and put upon them their garments, and he sat on above their garments. So the great crowd spread their own garments on the road, and others were cutting branches from the trees and spreading the road. (C) So the crowds leading before and following him were shouting, stating, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Worthy of praise is he coming in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” And, he having entered into Jerusalem, all the city was stirred up, stating, “Who is this man?” So the crowds stated, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth of Galilee.” Matthew 21: 1-11 
Recently US President Donald Trump blasted Iran in his UN General Assembly speech, calling on other nations to join Washington in further isolating the Islamic Republic. His strategy seems to be to force Tehran to agree to a more stringent version of the 2015 Nuclear Deal that the US, alone among its seven signatories, reneged on earlier this year.

The next round of US sanctions is due to hit Iran next month. The messaging system – SWIFT – which enables money to be sent around the world could well be placed under pressure from the US to stop dealing with Iranian banks, thereby forcing the banks in the other six signatory countries to abandon investments there. Is that the plan?

‘Humility is one of the chiefs of all the virtues: it is the hallmark of the child of God.’ (D Martyn Lloyd-Jones, writer and preacher, 1899-1981)
Maybe it’s time to compare the destructive threats of Iran in the nuclear field and the US in the monetary field with the donkey intentions of Jesus towards the end of Matthew’s first century biography about him.  See (A) in bold above.

Jesus was coming close to Jerusalem in what were to be the last few days of his life. Would he enter Jerusalem with powerful military or financial support? No – he wanted a donkey and a donkey’s foal. He would enter on a donkey – not even on a horse.

Such was Jesus’ greatness that he knew there would be a donkey and a foal in the village in front of them as they walked. It was so. For several months Iran thought it had the new freedom it coveted. It’s not so. 

But in AD30, yes, it was so - the donkey and foal were there and, just as Jesus said, the two disciples whom he sent to seek to borrow them were challenged about untying them, gave the reply that Jesus had given them, and brought the donkey and colt to Jesus. 

Jesus was in command of all things when he went into Jerusalem, when he went to his death as a criminal upon a cross. What does that actually mean?

But there’s more. Look at what Matthew wrote – (B) in bold above. The prophet named Zechariah had written this around 520 BC: “Say to the daughter of Zion, ‘Look and see, your king is coming to you, humble, and going on a donkey and on a colt, the offspring of a beast of burden.’” His writing had been preserved over the centuries as part of the national archives of the Jews.

‘I believe every Christian man has a choice between being humble and being humbled.’ (C H Spurgeon, preacher and writer, 1834-1892) 
Does Iran want to destroy life? Does the US want to destroy life? Who really, really knows? Does Jesus want to destroy life? To destroy those who want to destroy life? To be supreme? To win? Should I look into a man who arranges a donkey to be his triumphal death transport – and then rises again? 

Should I ignore him? Should I place my trust in the world leaders who try to dispense death to others, often to save themselves – but who ultimately pass away - for ever?

As Matthew rightly records in (C) in bold above, “Who is this man?” “This prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee”? Who is he?

Sinner Syvret

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