So, we keep journeying to Easter.We are still a week away from the start of Holy Week. A week before Jesus entered Jerusalem and all that would unfold.The week before. It's like a Tuesday. What happens on a Tuesday?The weeks not long started. Thursday is always just before Friday.Wednesday is half way.Monday - there always has to be Monday.But Tuesday.Nothing special.
So, it's the week before Holy Week.Ever wonder what Jesus did before that week began?The Synoptic Gospels have Jesus in Jericho.And not just in Jericho but in Jericho with a blind man.
Jesus was always intentional.So why at this time, this last week before everything else happen, does He visit Jericho?
The meeting of a blind man is significant. often it’s a comparison being made between being physically unable to see and spiritually being unable to see. In this case Bartimaeus who is physically blind can see spiritually - and he used the term 'Jesus, Son of David' to declare Jesus to be the promised Messiah.
But why do this in Jericho?
Likely a few reasons but the one that stirs my soul is the thinking that there in Jericho - on the week before he would enter Jerusalem and let the powers that be crucify him - he comes to Jericho where all the wannabee powerful and rich Hasmonaeans, including Herod, had their winter palaces. Jericho was their playground, where they flaunted their wealth acquired through traitored rule and corruption.They had their palaces and their pretenses of kingly power.Now Jesus standing looking at the palaces, He heals a blind man who sees the real Jesus the Christ. In that simple act he displays more power and more authority than any and all of them had together.From that place, that act - He then marches back towards Jerusalem and them doing all they could to try to destroy Him.
So ......it’s the last ordinary week before the start of Holy Week.Where's your Jericho?Where is wealth and power flaunted that forget or that challenge who really holds all authority and power?Who holds that power over you and taunts you or haunts you?Who or where do you need to stand this week and remind yourself that the one who holds you holds all authority? Whose palace do you need to stand in front of and remind yourself what true power looks like?This next week take the walk symbolically to Jericho as you then walk strongly and courageously into Holy Week and the Kings of Jericho trying their best to hold power but Jesus redefining all power through being a crucified Messiah.
There is something very poignant in walking to Jerusalem via Jericho.
Senior Interim PastorGilbert Fostergilbert@whenigrowup-global.com