You are What You Drive
Matthew 21:1-3 | by Amy Schenkel
March 15, 2023
BBC News recently reported on Anne Marie Squeo, a 55-year-old marketing and communications professional whose fiery red Tesla sports utility vehicle made her feel like she had joined a special "club" of people who were doing something to help the environment, while still driving with style. However, her feelings changed after recent news articles about Tesla’s founder, Elon Musk. "I wondered if people were making a judgment about me that I wasn't looking for," she wrote. Our cars do tend to say something about us, right?
Suburban neighborhoods are full of minivans, but a high-level executive is unlikely to pick up his client from the airport in one. My grandparents drove a Taurus for decades, which represented their values of practicality and comfort without being too flashy.
In this Scripture passage, Jesus chooses a very interesting form of transportation for his entry into Jerusalem: a DONKEY! This is not a trivial choice, for the donkey was saying something about who Jesus is. Matthew reminds his audience of the prophecy in Zechariah 9:9, which says: “Rejoice, O people of Zion! Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem! Look, your king is coming to you. He is righteous and victorious, yet he is humble, riding on a donkey— riding on a donkey’s colt.”
Although an earthly king would ride through town on his battle horse following a victory, Jesus chose to ride a simple donkey. He is the King of all kings, and he is both righteous and victorious. But he knew the nationalistic tendencies of the people to want a king that would make their nation stand above the rest. So, he chose to ride a donkey, a symbol of humility and peace, indicative of the kind of kingdom this King would bring.
Prayer: King of kings, help us to long for the eternal kingdom you ushered in on this journey into Jerusalem. Help us to be people of humility and peace. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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