Why did Jesus go to Jerusalem?
Reading: Luke 13:34–35, Luke 19:41-44
Additional readings: Matthew 23:37–39, Romans 10 and 11
K-hymn: 85, 97, 92
Blanks: gather, children, wept, peace, recognize
Today’s sermon would be a bit boring, but…anyway.
(3) Jerusalem is a very special city for Jesus.
He chose to die in Jerusalem.
He didn’t want to die anywhere else.
Why is that?
(3) It started like this.
Two thousand years before Jesus was born, God asked Abraham to give his son, Isaac to God in Jerusalem.
(Genesis 22:2, 2 Chronicles 3:1)
Then Abraham decided to obey and give his son to God.
But at the end, God stopped him.
God stopped him because one day God would give God’s son, Jesus, for all people.
God would sacrifice the Son in Jerusalem to show God’s love for Abraham, his decedents and all people.
Since then, this place was special for God.
(3) Then ten hundred years later, King David made Jerusalem as his Capital City.
Since then many Jewish kings lived there.
Jesus was also known as the King of Jews.
So, from here, Jesus was supposed to rule the whole earth, as the King of Israel, and the King of Kings.
King David also wanted to build the temple in Jerusalem.
(3) Then God allowed his son, King Solomon to build the temple of God there.
So, Solomon built a nice temple following the design God gave to Moses.
What was the temple? (2 Chronicles 3:1)
The temple was something God designed to show Jesus and his ministry.
Since Jesus would die there as God’s sacrifice, God allowed them to build this temple there so that it would help explaining why Jesus would die there.
So, Jesus decided to die in Jerusalem.
Jerusalem was his place to give his life for the forgiveness of all people.
That was why Jesus was to be crucified in Jerusalem.
About 500 years before Jesus came, God predicted saying: (Zech 9:9)
"Rejoice greatly, shout, Daughter of Jerusalem!
See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey."
(3) So, when Jesus came, he did exactly the same.
Jesus marched to Jerusalem riding a donkey showing that he was their King.
Even though he was gentle, this was his city.
Jerusalem was his capital city.
(3) Then he went to the temple.
Then Jesus challenged them to use the temple in a right way.
Jesus said that they should use this place more for prayer.
But they didn’t agree with him and with his theology.
So the religious leaders planed to get rid of him.
(3) Then one day Jesus wept over this city, Jerusalem.
Why did Jesus weep over Jerusalem?
God has been trying to do some good work here.
Jesus was willing to do all the good things for them.
But they were not welcoming the Son of God, Jesus.
So, Jesus wept for them knowing exactly what would happen to them, because they didn’t want Jesus as their king. (Luke 19:41-44)
But still Jesus would die for them to show God’s faithfulness.
But only if they have welcomed Jesus, they would have seen their salvation.
Only if they accept Jesus as their king and Savior, they would have been saved.
So, Jesus cried for those who lived in his capital city.
(3) But Jesus didn’t give up.
After his death and resurrection, Jesus asked his disciples: (Acts 1:8)
“You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.
Then you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
Their ministry was to begin here in Jerusalem with the Holy Spirit.
The story of Jesus should go forth from Jerusalem.
God also didn’t give up. (Zechariah 12:10)
One day, God will pour out on them a spirit of grace and mercy.
Then they would look on Jesus whom they have pierced.
They may mourn for him, as if they were mourning for their only child.
They would weep for him, as if he were their firstborn.
(3) Then, when Jesus comes back, he would build a New Jerusalem.
In this New Jerusalem, there would no temple because Jesus is the temple.
There would be no sacrifice because Jesus is the perfect sacrifice, the eternal Lamb of God.
The light of Jesus will shine always there.
All those who believe in Jesus can enter there.
All nations will come and worship him. (Rev. 21: 22-27)
When Jesus is the king over all the earth like this, all the nations will live in a perfect peace forever. (Zechariah 14:3-5, 9)
All the nations will just enjoy their livings. (Micah 4:1-4)
All the nations will live knowing who Jesus is.
And they will live for God.
Because Jesus is God, once he decided to use this place, he did so faithfully.
Because Jesus is God, once he decided to use us, he will do so faithfully.
Jesus, you are God.
You are light.
May your light shine so that we may see clearly.
Then may we live according to your words in the place where you want us to be.
In your name, we pray.