Monday of Holy Week starts with Jesus in Bethany and the walk back to Jerusalem. The problem however was Jesus was hungry (Mark 11: 12). On the natural side of things you have to wonder why his host had not supplied breakfast? Was Jesus being a good guest and did not wake them up or had they even stayed in anyone’s house? They certainly had to return the donkey from the day before and the Mount of Olives and Bethany were places of seclusion and safety after the big parade into Jerusalem.
After the jokes you could make about hunger and being grumpy Jesus’ actions in the Temple and with the fig tree are significant. (See my study on figs) and (Monday, Holy Week 2013) Hunger is a complex chemical reaction of the body that involves several of your body systems: nerves, blood, digestive, and hormonal systems. Jesus’ body was ready to break the night’s fast and to get back into a properly functioning track. His expectation of fruit on the tree even though it was not in season really was not out of line, as they will do that. But the curse on the tree foreshadows the experience He is about to have in the Temple and what will happen to religious bodies that do not bear fruit. The Temple (tree) is not bearing fruit even though it appears busy (leaves) so it is not helping the people just feeding itself. The whole system from priest, to animal sellers, moneychangers, and worshippers were not functioning properly.
Jesus’ physical hunger and His supernatural zeal for the Temple and the things of God are driving forces that demanded action. So when He could not be satisfied stopping the problem was His response – curse on the tree and stopping the merchandise.
References for Monday of Holy Week: Matthew 21: 12-17, Mark 11:12-19, Luke 19:45-47, John 12: 20-50
Palm Sunday, which celebrates Jesus’ ride into Jerusalem, begins what we call “Holy Week.” Starting at the Mount of Olives, Jesus begins the day with a powerful statement that has slipped by me for years – Jesus had need of a donkey.
Jesus on the Donkey
Needs. A little word, everyone has them and we spend most of our lives working to take care of them. We confuse needs and wants, they really are quite different and we must separate the two. But to need something so that you can continue in life and business that is an important item. Recently my wife read a short article by Bishop Fulton Sheen on how Jesus had “needs.” That should have been no big deal, after all, he was human but that need was a donkey. It was a necessity that He had to have that young donkey, not its mother but the colt. I know that Jesus had a small group of women that supplied His needs in Galilee (Mark 15: 41) but somehow you never seem to think about Jesus having needs and that a human would take care of them. The Greek word for needs in the story of Palm Sunday with the ride into Jerusalem is chreia (Strong’s 5532) and it implies employment, demand, necessity, business, and needs.
I am sure that Jesus was used to walking and probably had walked many miles to just get to the Mount of Olives. So when He asked two disciples to go get a donkey they had to think it was strange and then He said it was a need. In Isaiah 62: 11 the prophecy says that the king was to come into Zion riding a colt so Jesus knew that the donkey was a necessity. (I like to think the house they went to belonged to Mary and Martha.) For Jesus to fulfill His supernatural destiny He had to borrow that donkey.
We will have needs just like Jesus so we can fulfill our destiny.
God may use people to help supply our needs.
We may not recognize our needs but it could be something as simple as a borrowed donkey.
God knows what your needs are and has already positioned them for you to find and use.