Monday Reflection – August 19, 2019
Rejoice, Daughter of Zion!!!
Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey. Zechariah 9:9
Today’s Watchword summons God’s people to celebrate and rejoice for what is on the horizon. This is a theme in this book. The people are described as “Daughter of Zion” and “Daughter of Jerusalem”, which are terms of endearment, and serve as a means of inviting the people to recognize their priviledged identity in God. Interestingly and even ironically, this call to celebrate is in the context of the Israelites who had spent seventy years of servitude in exile, followed by a return to Jerusalem that has been difficult and disappointing. So, what is the cause for rejoicing? Their king will come to them with righteousness and salvation. The prophet also assures the people of Yahweh’s forgiveness and his presence among them.
This king in question here is the messianic king. Both Matthew 21:5 and John 12:15 quote Zechariah 9:9 in connection with Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. Their king will be righteous and victorious. They can depend on him to do the right thing and to save the people. Another point of interest is this king will come riding on a donkey. It was quite common for people to ride donkeys, but a warrior would usually ride a horse. To have the messianic-king come riding a donkey is a sign of peaceful intentions. He doesn’t ride the triumphant stallion of a conquering general, but the customary mount for royalty, coming in peace.
Inherent in this text are at least two thoughts for us to reflect:
- The Message of Hope – The people were distressed and anxious about the future. They were seeking to find ways to recover and make life. The prophet Zechariah declares a word from the Lord that their King is coming. We face episodes in our lives that cause stress and distress, with great uncertainty about what’s ahead. The text offers to us God’s assurance that salvation and victory is certain for his people. And because God is our trusted deliverer, we can rejoice and shout for joy; praising God in advance.
- The Call to Humility – The King will come riding on a donkey, a sign of humility. God’s continued call to his people is to demonstrate a life of humility. He often used the exilic experiences to humble his people. When the messianic-king came, he modeled a life of humility and called on all to humble themselves. Jesus declares in Matthew 23:12, “All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted.” Such humility should not be faked, but genuine. Spurgeon says, “It is astonishing how much of pride there is in the most modest…we must pray God to make us humble.”
Until next week, let’s rejoice and shout for joy in anticipation of God’s action among us. Let’s receive the message of hope and demonstrate humility.