John 12:12-19 The Crowd’s Contribution
We are joining Jesus in another event that made the cut in all four gospels. It is His entry into Jerusalem on a donkey. He entered that day as the King of Israel in fulfilment of prophecy.
John focuses our attention on the crowd in His narrative. This crowd has been following Jesus for a while. I doubt all the members were the same throughout, but He has been gathering followers since healing the man born blind. John mentions that “the large crowd that had come to the feast” was there to see Jesus. This is also the crowd that was comforting Mary right before Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. Many of their members were present when Jesus called him out. I bet some of them even helped untie Lazarus. Some from this crowd was probably also present at the banquet where Mary anointed Jesus.
Now the crowd in mass is going to welcome Jesus into Jerusalem. This is the crowd that the Father has recently been drawing to Jesus through the unmistakable acts of divine intervention. These men and women have seen the impossible happen at Jesus’ command. None other than the King, Messiah, promised by the prophets could have done these works. And they are prepared to give Jesus a worthy welcome into the Holy City. Jerusalem, the city of the great kings. Not even the Pharisees or chief priests plots could keep this celebration from happening! Because, once again, it was part of God’s plan.
I can’t imagine the joy and excitement running through the crowd that day. These people had been hearing about the coming Messiah from the time they took their first breath. Their father and grandfathers had been hearing this same promise too. But NOW it was happening right before their eyes! They were convinced that this was Him. I wonder if the joy expressed during the return of the Ark was as grand as this event. The people might not know it, but this entry meant so much more. It was the beginning of the last phase of the fulfillment of that previous entry’s promise.
Lord Jesus, I would love to see Your scrapbook of that day. See the faces as they lined the streets. Watch Your disciples as they pointed all eyes towards You. Heard the children as they sang Your praise. Watched as even the sun stood a little brighter. Heaven was probably rejoicing too. But were they also waiting with baited breath? Did the angels know what was coming next? Were the disciples also secretly wishing You had come in with a little less fanfare to avoid the religious leaders? Were they rejoicing and cringing? Were they thinking, “It’s about time”, or were they waiting for the other shoe to drop? Were any of them thinking of Your predictions of Your death? Were You thinking ahead or only of the moment?
Father God, thank You for seeing to it that Your Son was recognized properly, at least once before His final hours. This too was a gift straight from You. He deserved the honor for His willingness to walk this path, but did He give You the glory and honor that day too? He was pointing the people to You every chance He got. He also made sure to inform them that access to You came through acceptance and belief in Him. This crowd was filling that particular requirement that day.