This is one of the more poignant portions of scripture. After dealing with the Pharisees, Jesus weeps,
O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’
All throughout Israel’s history, they had rejected the Word of the Lord and the prophets that shared it. And now, Jesus was saying that judgment was coming. The temple would be destroyed yet again (which happened in 70 A.D.) and the Jews would be dispersed until the 20th century. And only when Israel as a nation accepts Jesus as Lord will they see him again.
But what does this mean for us? I think we see several things in this passage. What God longs to do, what he won’t do, and what he can’t do.
What does God long to do? He longs to draw us into a close and intimate relationship with us. A loving relationship in which he cares for us as a hen cares for its chicks, and we find peace, satisfaction, and joy.
What will God not do? He will not force us to accept him. He told the Jews, I longed to draw close to you, but “you were not willing.” God will not force himself upon us. And if we choose to reject him, he will accept our decision.
What can’t God do? He can’t give us a life of joy, satisfaction, and peace without him. Not won’t. Can’t. Because we were designed for a relationship with him. And as long as we are apart from him, there will always be a missing piece in our soul. We can try to fill it up with many things, money, possessions, jobs, or relationships. But none can fill the piece that a relationship with God can complete. Instead, we will ultimately be left desolate. Because that’s what life is without God. Desolation. Without love, because God is love. Without peace, because God is peace. Without joy, because God is joy.
And you will never truly have these things until the day you say in your heart, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.”
How about you? Have you accepted Jesus as Savior in your life? Or have you been spending your life trying to find love, joy, and peace without him. That kind of life will leave you desolate. You will only find true satisfaction in a relationship with him. Won’t you accept him today?
Lord, I admit that I have turned my back on you. I have been trying to live life without you, and it’s left me empty, desolate. Forgive me. I believe you died on the cross to take the punishment for my sin, and I believe he rose again. I accept you as my Lord and Savior. Now draw me close in a relationship with you. In Jesus name, amen.