April 19 - Jesus Wept

By Alice Northcutt

Devotional Scripture: Luke 19:41

Central Thought: Jesus loves us and weeps over us when we refuse to accept Him and His will.

    I have prayed and wept with individuals: parents, grandparents, spouses, and other concerned family members and friends who were emotionally devastated because of the actions or choices of a child, grandchild, spouse, or other family member or friend.

    We can probably all relate to the hurt and despair that comes when the one we love turns away from our value system or even away from us personally. Unfaithfulness in marriage, ungodly lifestyles, unhealthy practices, and dishonesty: these are only a few of the myriad of issues that cause deep hurt. From this deep hurt may come weeping. We may even question, 'Why?”

    In the Scripture reading from Luke we find Jesus weeping. He wept over the city of Jerusalem, a city that was considered the religious center for God's people. Why would Jesus weep over the religious capital of the Jewish people? Had He not just been welcomed by rejoicing throngs as He made His way into town on the colt of a donkey? Did those who thronged about Him not praise God for the mighty works Jesus had done? Did they not call Him King?

    True, Jesus was welcomed by throngs as he made His way into the city. But Jesus knew that He was rejected by the city as a whole and by the religious leaders in particular. He was about to give His life for all of these people. And He was about to give His life at the hands of those who kept the law religiously but rejected Him, the Messiah for whom they were looking. No, the religious leaders would not actually kill Jesus, but they would request His death.

    Jesus also knew that destruction would come to Jerusalem. He knew the turmoil that would be with the people for hundreds, and even thousands, of years. He knew that all the love He felt for them, even laying down His life, would change the city only if the people of the city chose to believe in and accept Him. Does Jesus not weep for all who reject Him? All who refuse to turn to Him with their problems? With their love and submission? His love for each of us is just as strong as His love for Jerusalem.

Devotional Prayer: Lord, help me to accept You and Your will, and may I never give You cause to weep over me as You wept over Jerusalem.

Bible Reading: Joshua 19:1-20:9; Luke 19:28-48; Psalm 88:1-18; Proverbs 13:12-14