The Power of Politics and Man
Matthew 21:5,9 Behold, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey… And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
I rarely write of politics. I just do not have much to say about the subject. On reading this passage however, I realized how unusual Jesus’ approach to politics was and I felt I needed to address it.
If I were granted all power, named king and tasked with saving my people, I do not think that I would enter my capitol on a donkey. I do not think this is what the Jewish people had hoped for either. They expected their messiah to wield great political power, overthrow the corrupt institutions of man and assume his rightful place as their earthly ruler.
Instead, Jesus entered Jerusalem one week before his crucifixion on a borrowed donkey. He was honored nonetheless. The crowd, perhaps some of whom would call for his death a week later, at least at that time, proclaimed his triumphant entry.
I so often find myself thinking that I would have done it differently. I look at how God worked out his plan and I think, there must have been a better way, right? If I were God… Perhaps He should have consulted me…
Jesus, being God, could have used his power to bend the knee of every king to himself. He could have taken the world by force and He could have decreed, by law, that everyone bow down and obey him. He should have crowned himself king and forced all to follow him.
This is not God’s plan however. His plan does not force and it does not rely on the power of politics and man. Jesus did not come to rule as an earthly king. He came to die. He came to restore us to God and to change one heart at a time.
If I had to save the world, this is not how I would do it. I would mistakenly think that the only way to affect real change was to take control of governments and make laws. I would desire that which man sees as real power.
Jesus appeared to have no desire to attain the power of man. He humbly rode a donkey into his city and allowed himself to be crucified as a criminal. His idea of power was just so completely contrary to mine. Jesus’ plan was to draw one soul at a time to God and to thus change the world over the course of centuries.
As his follower, I should continually seek to follow his plan, not mine. I am not suggesting that I should not vote or have any political opinion, but I do not rely on politics or man to save the world. It is my responsibility as a follower of Christ to love my neighbor and share what He has done for me. That is his plan to change the world. I need to follow it.