Jesus weeps over Jerusalem + Luke 19:41-48
Jesus drew near to Jerusalem, saw the city, and wept over it.
The people of Jerusalem did not know what true peace was and that Jesus would bring it.
Jesus had come down from heaven to bring peace.
At Jesus’ birth, the angels in heaven sang “Peace on earth.”
After His resurrection, Jesus appeared to His disciples and said, “Peace be with you.”
That is why Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, He was coming to bring peace.
Jesus was coming to Jerusalem to suffer and die for the sins of the world.
True peace is found in the forgiveness of sins.
On the cross, Jesus spoke peace to the soldiers who nailed Him to the cross, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.”
On the cross, He spoke peace to the criminal dying on the cross next to Him, “Today you will be with me in paradise.”
Jesus came to purchase and win the sinful world from sin, death, and the power of the devil, not with gold or silver, but with His holy precious blood and His innocent, bitter suffering and death.
That is why we pray in the prayer Jesus gave us, “Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.” As we have been forgiven by our Father in heaven, so we forgive our neighbor who sins against us.
The people of Jerusalem had rejected the peace that Jesus came to bring.
The religious leaders, in Jerusalem, hated Jesus. They wanted an earthly king to rival the power of Caesar in Rome. They wanted earthly power and might. They wanted financial wealth. They wanted praise and honor. This is just the opposite of who Jesus is and what Jesus came to bring.
And so they put Jesus, who is the Christ, the Son of the living God, to death, to get rid of Him.
This is why Jesus wept over the city of Jerusalem when He saw it.
Jesus knew that the day would come, when Jerusalem’s enemies would set up a barricade around them and surround them and hem them in on every side and tear them down to the ground, every man, woman and child in that city. The enemies of Jerusalem would not leave one stone upon another in Jerusalem. This event would take place in the year 70A.D. when Roman soldiers destroyed the city of Jerusalem, the temple and everything inside the city walls.
They did not believe that Jesus came to bring peace.
They wanted nothing to do with the peace of God which surpasses all human understanding, found only in Jesus Christ our Lord.
That is why, when Jesus entered Jerusalem, He entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold, saying to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a den of robbers.”
Jesus was angry, because the religious leaders were stealing from the people, they were teaching false things to the people, they were keeping the truth from the people.
Because of the “so called” religious leaders in Jerusalem, the people did not believe that Jesus was the One promised by God to Adam and Eve in the Garden, who would come to crush the head of the serpent with His death on the cross. They did not know true peace which could only be found in Jesus. Shame on those people in Jerusalem. How could they not see? How could they not believe? How could they not repent and follow JEsus?
Jesus drew near to Calhoun County, and saw the cities of Manson, Knierim, Rockwell City, Lohrville, Somers, and all the rest, and He wept over them.
The people in this place do not know the one thing that makes for peace, and it makes our Lord and God weep.
The day is now. Our enemies are here. The barricades have been set up around us. We are hemmed in on every side. We will be torn down to the ground. We do not know that true peace is found in Jesus.
We must beware, before it is too late and the true peace of God, in Christ Jesus, is hidden from our eyes.
Shame on us, we do not fear, love and trust in God above all things.
On the Last Day, when our Lord comes again to judge the quick and the dead, He will judge us and condemn us, because we do not find true peace in Jesus. We do not believe that Jesus is the only Way to heaven. We do not believe that what Jesus teaches is the only Truth. We do not believe that we are dead and that Life only comes from Jesus. Shame on us.
We deserve temporal death and eternal punishment. We do not call upon God’s name in every trouble and time of need. We do not worship and give thanks to God for what He has done for us, that we have been called by the Gospel, enlightened with His gifts, sanctified and kept with Jesus in the one true faith. We take the gift of God and His name for granted. Shame on us.
We despise preaching and God’s Word. We do not hold God’s Holy Word Sacred. We don’t gladly gather together to hear it preached and taught in all of its truth and purity. We either think that the Word of God will always be there, or that we know enough, or that it doesn’t matter.
Just as the rain comes and there are floods, so too the rain goes away and there are droughts, so it is with the Word of God. God can take it away. It can be hidden from our eyes.
God has spoken. “My house shall be a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves.” Shame on us for trying to find peace in other gods. We should not be surprised when our world crumbles down, not just around us, but on top of us.
Just as we do not honor God, placing all fear, love and trust in Him above all things, neither do we honor father and mother. And why should we, fathers and mothers do not want to be responsible for their children. As they have been commanded by God, fathers and mothers are not only supposed to love their children and provide clothing, food, and shelter for their children, they are also supposed to teach their children the faith, bringing them to church to be baptized and receive the Lord’s Supper, teaching them the Ten Commandments, the Apostles’ Creed, the Lord’s Prayer.
We should not be surprised when society does not love God and neighbor. How can it, when it isn’t modeled in the family?
We should not be surprised when death and violence and envy and hatred are so prevalent in our society, we are eager to kill unwanted babies in their mother’s womb or our grandmother in the nursing home, we get angry with or provide for or look suspiciously upon the hungry, the homeless, the naked, those in prison, those of a different race. Shame on us.
Look at ourselves. As individuals, we don’t lead sexually pure and descent lives in what we say, think, or do. We are selfish, desiring our own pleasure, even to the harm of our neighbor. Shame on us.
Look at our marriages. As husband and wife, joined together as one flesh, we don’t love and honor each other. How can we, when we are so focused upon ourselves and what we want, we don’t have time to worry about our spouse and their needs, nor do we have time to worry about the children which are produced by the marriage. Shame on us.
There is no peace among us, because we don’t know where true peace is to be found.
True peace is found in Jesus Christ and His holy life, death on the cross, resurrection from the dead, ascension into heaven and coming again to take us to be where He is in heaven. Jesus did all of this that we would have forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body and life everlasting in heaven. True peace is given to us in baptism, where the gifts of the kingdom are given to us. And we lead holy lives as children of God, heirs of heaven. This is where our shame is removed from us.
True peace is given to us when the pastor speaks words of forgiveness to us, removing our sins from us, removing our shame from us.
True peace is given to us in Holy Communion, where the gift of God’s love is given to us, where we taste and see that the Lord is good, slow to anger toward us, abounding in steadfast love toward us. Here we are strengthened in faith toward God and love toward neighbor.
In Christ, no longer are we ashamed, rather, we rejoice, give thanks and sing. Amen.