Going Up to Jerusalem

KEY VERSE: “When the time was come that he should be received up, he steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem.” —Luke 9:51

SELECTED SCRIPTURE: Luke 19:29-40, 45-48

JESUS was well aware from the prophecies that his primary mission on earth was to die, taking Adam’s place in death, thus providing the ransom-price for him—a perfect man for a perfect man. One of these prophecies is found in the psalms which reads, “Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened: burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required. Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me. I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.” (Ps. 40:6-8) The prophecy describes Jesus’ attitude and understanding after he had received the Holy Spirit at Jordan. The statement, mine ears thou hast opened, refers to the enlightenment of mind that resulted from this experience. Jesus was able to discern that the sacrifices under the Law Covenant for the atonement for sin were only a picture of the reality. He understood that the sacrifice of bulls and goats did not accomplish what God required—they did not really atone for sin. But Jesus, as a perfect man, could make atonement for Adam’s sin and lift Adamic condemnation from the human race. This Jesus understood and he was willing, yea, eager to conform to the Heavenly Father’s will.

We know that this is the meaning of the prophecy because the Apostle Paul interprets the psalm for us in Hebrews 10:6-9: “In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the Law; then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God.” This understanding of his real mission here on earth was the motivating force in his life and overrode any other consideration or activity. This determination is expressed in our key verse which states that he steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem where he knew that he would be offered as the only efficacious offering for sin.

The prophecy in Daniel 9:25-27 concerning the seventy weeks revealed to Jesus that he, as the Messiah, was to be cut off in the midst of the week. The time for him to die as the anti-typical Passover lamb had come; Jesus, recognizing this, began to make preparations. To fulfill the type, it was necessary for him to present himself to the nation of Israel as their deliverer. The account recorded in Luke 19:29-38 as part of our lesson text is also a fulfillment of a prophecy recorded in Zechariah 9:9, which foretold of Jesus presenting himself to the nation of Israel.

The account states that the multitude began to rejoice with a loud voice saying, “Blessed be the king that cometh in the name of the Lord.” Some of the Pharisees standing among the multitude complained to Jesus about the noise. They were probably concerned about the enthusiasm of the people, fearing that their position might be jeopardized. But Jesus said, “I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out” (Luke 19:40), the thought being that the prophecy concerning him at that moment must have its complete fulfillment.

We know that Jesus fulfilled his mission of providing the ransom-price just five days later on the fourteenth of Nisan—the Passover. The five days before his crucifixion were probably the most productive of our Lord’s ministry. It was during this time that he spoke many of his parables, among them were the parables of the two sons, the parable of the wicked husbandman, the parable of the marriage of the king’s son, the parable of the ten virgins, and the parable of the talents. During this time he also taught in the synagogue and spoke to the multitude. The scribes and Pharisees were determined to trap Jesus; they watched him and sent spies to hear what he said, in the hope that they could bring charges against him. But their efforts were not successful because our Lord’s time had not yet come. When the proper time came, Jesus yielded himself to them in order that God’s will might be done.

Dawn Bible Students Association
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