4: King on a Donkey

Posted: Thursday, May 29th, 2014
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Learn from those who have gone before how perfectly the Lord will secure a destiny from the inevitable downfall of humanity's donkey nature.

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Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your King comes to you;
He is (uncompromisingly) just and
having salvation (triumphant and victorious),
patient, meek, lowly and
riding on a donkey, upon a colt, the foal of a donkey.
Zechariah 9:9 Amplified

His going into Jerusalem was all about His identity, at last revealed to everyone.  Jesus had asked the disciples to tell him who they thought he was.  They answered first with the ideas of the times, Elijah, John… but Jesus insisted on their personal answer.  Who do YOU say I am?  Peter was the brave one who spoke.

Peter knew the identity of Jesus, not a guess, a perfect unveiling of this Unique Man – different from all other men – the Father having revealed His Son to the heart of a plain man, rapt in wonder.  “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God” (Matt. 16:16).

From this time, from this revelation, Jesus began preparing His disciples for His death, and turned toward Jerusalem for His final destiny. There was one who knew and who spoke it out. Jesus was known as Messiah, so now He could die as God (Matt. 16:21).

By parable, by miracle, Jesus journeyed His way to the inevitable.  He stopped outside of Jerusalem coming to Bethphage and Bethany at the Mount of Olives.  He stayed here in the village of Bethany with Lazarus and his sisters.  It was then that Christ was anointed by Mary’s expensive perfume, just the day before His Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem…

There He sent two disciples to the village of Bethphage.  “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, on which no one yet has ever sat; untie it and bring it here. If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ you say, ‘The Lord has need of it’; and immediately he will send it back here” (Mk. 11:2-3).

Here Matthew quotes Zechariah’s prophecy.  This happened that what was spoken by the prophet might be fulfilled, saying, “Say to the daughter of Zion (inhabitants of Jerusalem), Behold your King is coming to you, lowly and riding on a donkey, and on a colt, the foal of a donkey (a beast of burden)” (Mt. 21:4-5 AMP).

400 years before the time of Christ, Zechariah saw the scene.  The King, Messiah and Savior, in the meekness unknown to human kings, riding a mere common beast of burden.  This Zechariah saw… and comprehended the humility it bespoke.

No splendid chariot of the typical conqueror.  No towering camel draped with trappings.  No white stallion of prancing power.  This king, this Eternal Monarch, linked Himself to the most common man, to the humblest of humanity.  His choice of the donkey spoke of many things.  By the lowly calm of His commanding presence, Jesus tamed a wild donkey colt never ridden before.  Unbroken colt, not pure, but stubborn in its primal anarchy.  No minor feat.  In fact, a miracle, obscure but fraught with meaning.

“They (the disciples) brought the donkey and the colt and laid their coats upon them, and He seated Himself on them (the clothing).  And most of the crowd kept spreading their garments on the road and others kept cutting branches from the trees and scattering them on the road.”
Matt. 21:7-8 AMP

The three years of His astounding words and acts had brought a fame that convinced the multitude He was… a King.  As KING, Jesus entered Jerusalem.  And the welcome He received was that of a Conquering King.

Clothing, the coverings of our shame-before-God, the hiding of our wretchedness. These were not needed in the presence of a Humble King, man and God in one.  So humanity stripped their facades, worn from the days of Eden’s disgrace and threw them with abandon at the feet of the King they welcomed.  Even the branches of nature bowed before Him, made a carpet for His honor.  Humanity bowed, donkey bowed, nature bowed.  The King of Glory was in procession, coming in!

He rode upon a King’s carpet of homage, laid down by multitudes of willing subjects, wild with the excitement of their soul’s recognition of the Savior-King.

And the crowds that went ahead of Him and those that followed Him kept shouting ‘Hosanna (O be propitious, graciously inclined) to the Son of David (the Messiah)! Blessed, praised, glorified is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna (O be favorably disposed) in the highest heaven!’
Matthew 21:9 Amplified

Crowds of people welcomed Him as King, knew Him as Messiah, promised and awaited, here arriving by the foal of a donkey just as Zechariah envisioned and as he recorded in texts with which they were familiar.

At last Jesus released His identity. His hiding was over.  His pleas for secrecy had ended.  His public declaration was made and the people as a whole city, understood He was Messiah and King.  They treated Him as such with a royal carpet of their own sacrificial making.  They shouted His acclaim and “all the city became agitated and trembled with excitement” (vs 10).

The King of All Kings was marching into the city of His martyrdom.  And because the people recognized His Kingship, gave Him homage, honor and loud acclaim, they were, three days later, terribly without excuse.

Copyright © 2000 Martha Blaney Kilpatrick, Donkey Doctrine

Other Articles in Donkey Doctrine Series

1: Donkey Stories 2: Donkey Ways 3: Balaam
4: King on a Donkey (Currently Viewing)
5: Beast of Burden