ODJ: Jesus weeps

April 3, 2014 

READ: Luke 19:41-44 

As [Jesus] came closer to Jerusalem and saw the city ahead, he began to weep (v.41).

It happens often at weddings. The mother of the bride can be seen quietly sobbing. Her tears are a fitting response to her daughter’s ‘coming of age’ and the memories of the years she had nutured her.

The Jews were celebrating the coming of their long-awaited king (Luke 19:35-38). Yet Jesus was weeping, the second time He had wept openly. At the tomb of Lazarus, Jesus wept (John 11:35). Here He was crying audibly (Luke 19:41).

But why? His people had rejected Him. They sought political freedom. But Jesus came to deliver them from their sins and to offer them peace with God by way of the cross—not the crown.

Jesus looked at their past. God had raised many prophets, calling His people to repent. But they had killed the prophets (Luke 11:48, 13:34). Jesus looked at the present religiosity and piety that had accomplished little. The city was filled with pilgrims commemorating a sacred festival, but it was empty worship. Their temple had become a den of thieves (19:46). Jesus looked at the future. He saw the death, destruction and devastation that would come to the people and city (vv.43-44).

The Lord had lovingly and persistently pursued them, but they “were not willing!” (Luke 13:34 NIV). Jesus wept because His own people had rejected Him as their Messiah (19:14; John 1:11). Israel had wasted and exhausted her opportunities. “Now it [was] too late” (Luke 19:42). “Because [they] did not accept [their] opportunity for salvation” (v.44), only the fearful prospect of judgement was in view. Forty years later, the Romans came and destroyed Jerusalem and the temple.

Jesus weeps for you if you haven’t received His free gift of salvation. But it’s not too late! —K.T. Sim

365-day plan› 2 Samuel 5:1-12

What is your response to God’s appeal in 2 Corinthians 6:1-2 and Hebrews 3:7-15? 
How does the fact that Jesus wept affect your view of Him and His love for you? What will you do to bring honour and glory to Him this week?