Lament Over Jerusalem

Luke 13: 31-35
Eph 6: 10-20 / Ps 144: 1b, 2, 9-10

Behold, your house will be abandoned. I tell you, you will not see me again until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord’.
(Luke 13:35)

Jerusalem as predicted,
Is still a city divided.
But our Lord has resurrected,
And Satan has been defeated.

At that time some Pharisees came to Jesus and said to him, “Leave this place and go somewhere else. Herod wants to kill you.” He replied, “Go tell that fox, ‘I will drive out demons and heal people today and tomorrow, and on the third day I will reach my goal.’ In any case, I must keep going today and tomorrow and the next day — for surely no prophet can die outside Jerusalem! O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! Behold, your house will be abandoned. I tell you, you will not see me again until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’ (Luke 13: 31-35)

Reflection

Jesus loved Jerusalem, the city of His fond memories. But He could not save it from its own destruction because the people refused to accept Him as the Messiah, even as He knew (being God) that this city would for the next thousands of years be torn by strife, as it’s still happening today in the series of wars between the Jews and its Moslem neighbors.

The great paradox of human history is that inspite of God’s fondness for Jerusalem, it has been left behind by Christendom because its people were not willing to accept Jesus as the promised Messiah and Son of God. (“The first shall be last.”) But the whole world has been saved, because the Savior has resurrected and His Good News has spread to the rest of mankind. Jesus prophesied that the house of Jerusalem “will be abandoned”, and true enough, the Jews were scattered to many countries in the second Diaspora (AD 70) when the Romans invaded and destroyed Jerusalem. The persecution of the early church followed, and this was how Christianity spread throughout the world. The table was turned on Satan, who thought that Jerusalem was the only place that mattered, because it was here where our Lord was crucified.

“O Jerusalem, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings…” This lament comes from a God who loves so passionately even those who would persecute Him. Jesus’ beautiful words remind us of a similar passage in Psalm 91: “He will cover you with His feathers, and you will find shelter underneath His wings” (Psa.91:3-4). If our Lord could express His love and protection to such an unfaithful people like the Jews during His time, how much more for those who follow Him in all His ways? We in the renewal should hold on to this hope since we acknowledge Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. As He had promised to all who consider themselves true Christians, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.”

As we meditate on the salvation history that you crafted, Dear God, even sacrificing Your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ for mankind’s redemption, we come to know how great Your love is for all people who follow Your will. In this knowledge our faith and love for You have grown even more. Amen.

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