Links Daily Devotional

Much Ado About Much

FIFTH IN A SERIES ON THE GOSPEL JESUS PROCLAIMED

Crowds…were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” …the whole city was stirred up… (Matthew 21:9-10, ESV)

My mom’s expectations leaped like a mountain deer when a family birthday or holiday rolled around. She teased my two brothers, sister and me with her fresh-baked dinner rolls. We stood in line when we sensed she was ready to open the oven and pull out the 18″ x 12″ black tin pan packed with probably 30 rolls. I can almost feel the taste of them now. But Valna Hiskey did much more. She delivered a feast with our famous Idaho mashed potatoes, gravy, carrots and the best meatloaf ever made, topped off with hot apple pie.

Her banquet produced much hype.

Did Jesus fail? If so, more than two billion followers have believed a lie.Earlier this month, at the beginning of the PGA Championship, there was much hype. Media people were asking, “Will Jordan Spieth complete the Grand Slam and become the youngest person in golf history ever to do so?”

Shakespeare wrote a play about hype called Much Ado About Nothing in 1598. By the end of the third round there was Not Much Ado about Jordan. He had fallen out of contention.

But by Sunday night there was Much Ado about his buddy Justin Thomas, who emerged king.

A major championship can come with hype, but it’s no match for the Passover hype in about year 30 of the first century. The fans of that day were looking for a promised king to deliver them from bondage to Rome. A man had come—one who worked miracles—Jesus from Nazareth. But if Jesus was their king, he and his kingdom were like none other.

On Palm Sunday, two of his friends saddled the colt of a donkey for him to ride upon his entrance into Jerusalem. Some people of that day believed he was the Messiah-King. Others were probably questioning, “The Promised King of Israel on a little donkey? Why not a royal carriage or an Arabian stallion?” A third group asserted that Jesus was a fraud. They argued their case before the Roman authorities and won. Jesus was killed.

The prophet from Nazareth appeared to have failed. His message of good news, that the poor in spirit would inherit his kingdom, was dead. The powerful had killed him. His kingdom had not come.

Most people of Jesus’ day didn’t get it. What was the good news?

In one word. Jesus. Himself. And his different-kind-of-kingdom. A kingdom of “righteousness and peace and joy” (Romans 14:17). A kingdom entered by stooping. By making a paradigm shift, from self-enthronement to Jesus-enthronement. Through a process Jesus called the second birth.

Did Jesus fail?

If so, more than two billion followers have believed a lie. And both church and secular history has been fed a fraud.

We believe because history verifies Jesus rose from the dead to fulfil his astonishing claim, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever…believes in me shall never die” (John 11:25-26). His truths have stood the test of time. His kingdom has come. And we can enter it today.

There may be Much Ado about a mom’s banquet, or a major sporting event, but none like that day when Jesus rose to proclaim his kingdom continues and will never end.

Maybe you are uncertain and want to be sure you are part of his kingdom. Write us. We are more than happy to share how we, by grace, were brought into it.

Jim Hiskey
August 22, 2017
Copyright 2017 Links Players International
The Links Daily Devotional appears Monday-Friday at www.linksplayers.com.

Other devotions in this series:
1 A Large Mistake
2 The Key Fundamental
3 After the Humiliation: Good News
4 The Garland
6 The Living King and His Enduring Kingdom