“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, lowly and riding on a donkey, a colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zechariah 9:9).
“The king is coming!”
This announcement was received with mixed feelings in olden times. If the king was coming to share his bounty, then the news of His coming was splendid. But all too often he was coming to levy heavy taxes or to draft the young men into his service. Then his subjects viewed his coming with dread. In any case, they could be fairly certain that he would be more interested about his own welfare than theirs.
It is not so different with today’s politicians. Typically, they manipulate people and spin the facts. The public good is not their priority. Their own interests take precedence.
The King presented in Zechariah chapter nine stands out in stark contrast to such leaders. He is not coming to discover how much He can get out of His subjects. He comes to give and be generous in ways they neither expect nor deserve. There is no intention to “lord it over them.” Instead, His desire is to serve. Rather than oppressing the people, He comes to set them free. He comes not to wage war but to speak peace. His people have great reasons to rejoice when He comes, because His coming means only blessings for them. He is the King of glory! His name is Jesus Christ.
A Man Of Action!
Many readily dismiss Him. “He doesn’t look like a king!” Where is the pomp and circumstance? Where the jewels, the chariot, and the honor guard? His outward appearance is one of humility and lowliness. His birthplace was intended to be a shelter for farm animals, His cradle a manger.
Zechariah did foretell that this King would one day ride into Jerusalem as the King. Yet, even then His steed would be a young donkey, never broken, with its mother walking alongside. Later that week His appearance would become even less regal in His being numbered with the transgressors and crucified.
Everything about His coming is so modest, even despised. Who would welcome such a King?
He is welcomed by folk who cherish the gifts He brings. It is easier for leaders to make promises than it is for them to follow through. Indeed, some have made promises with no intention of following through. Not our King! What a thrill it is to have a King who does more than just talk! As a Man of action, He fulfills all that is promised.
As we prepare for Christmas, it is natural for our thoughts to be on Bethlehem. Yet no reflection on the advent of Christ is complete without also contemplating Calvary. That is where our King’s true glory shines through! He was obedient even to death on the cross, so that to His subjects an entrance will be supplied abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (2 Pet. 1:11).
The advent of our King is truly an occasion for a celebration! The gift which He has personally prepared for us is nothing less than eternal salvation.
“The everlasting Son Incarnate deigns to be; Himself a servant’s form puts on To set His servants free” (TLH 68:2). The result of His advent to earth will be our advent into heaven. For this reason we respond with exhilaration and praise every time we hear: “The King is coming!”
–Pastor Delwyn Maas