The Lord riding down a mountain into Jerusalem as a King of Israel in the presence of jubilant crowds was a historic moment, a fulfilment of several Old Testament prophesies. Zachariah had predicted this; “humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt the foal of a donkey,” (Zechariah 9:9). Many of the messianic shouts came from crowds that had witnessed the raising of Lazarus from the dead (John 12: 17-18). The two incidents that follow then, the crying out of the stones and the weeping of the Lord Jesus are a paradox given a jubilant and celebratory backdrop.
In response to Pharisees that demanded that Jesus rebuke those that were joyfully praising God, Jesus replies, “I tell you…if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” Stones, of all things, are not made for crying out. Is it a wonder then that when those called to praise God and proclaim his truths keep silent, that those who by nature are not positioned to carry out this task would be raised up to do it. I wonder; should today’s Church be silent on the truths important to God and humanity, that those not called or equipped to speak out and be God’s vessels would pick up the slack. I wonder very much, at what the implications for and to a silent and reticent Church are.
Jesus cries over the holy city because He is not willing for any to perish. It is a proof of Jesus’ human nature, that He too was prone to the afflictions of human emotion and that He would care so deeply for a city and a people on the brink of destruction because they did not pay heed to the time of God’s coming. What in our cities today make Jesus weep? Is it too late to pay heed to his cries? Or do we burrow our heads in the sand and wait for stones to do it for us?