He rides into Jerusalem amidst lavish, unrestrained, almost unanimous exaltation.
Slowly-on the colt of a donkey.
So many details here, in this story.
Why a colt?
So that a fully grown adult male on the colt prefigures the excruciating burden He will soon carry?
To assure that these faces, now adoring, soon to turn vicious as they scream, “Crucify Him!”, to the ones who know His innocence, perhaps even sense that “Something greater than Solomon is here” but who lack the courage to defy the mob and confess the Truth that stands before them can see clearly this face…these eyes?
The story is familiar in the telling, isn’t it?
But it takes more than a little prayer, study and more than a lot of grace to understand that our need to see this man as not really man, his suffering as not really suffering, to insist that the divine one surely is incapable of suffering like us, links us all with the untold millions throughout the centuries who steadfastedly refuse this free gift of salvation.
We are in good company.
A brief review of the early church provides ample evidence of what is called the Doecitist heresy: Jesus was not really man.
And the several hundred year controversy about her: she was only an ordinary woman, this woman selected by God Himself at the beginning of time to bring His Son into the ruined world . The argument rages today: she was simply a vessel, passively excreting this divine body, this woman called “Ave” by the angel Gabriel: palindrome of Eve.
How hard we work to deny our own sonship; with such fervor do we we turn away from this man- God who freely walked into the black and desolate abyss of His own death.
To show us The Way.
“You know nothing, nor do you consider that it is better for you that one man should die instead of the people, so that the whole nation may not perish’……he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, and not only for the nation, but also to gather into one the dispersed children of God. So from that day on they planned to kill him.”