As Jesus’ name became popular throughout Judea, people not only followed Him, but tracked His movements and planned to meet him. A communication network began developing as people traveled for business and heard of His whereabouts. When passing through an area, certain people would make a special effort to be located near a place they knew He would be visiting. Thinking about it, it is not much different than what we find today with infatuated groupies or deeply dedicated political followers.
On the campaign trail during our current presidential election primaries we heard reports of at least two candidates with followers so dedicated as to have had relatives, even children, perish while following a candidate on the campaign trail. Is this infatuated, deep faith in the individual’s abilities or foolishness? When one excuses truth for the purpose of continued loyalty and ignores even an individual’s own sinful activity it is a blind and empty faith. However, when there is no sin, where there is no debauchery, when there is only godliness and purity and the power of God displayed through that individual, then that level of wholehearted dedication is warranted because it testifies of the fruits of the spirit. The only individual to live a perfectly pure, godly life and exhibit the Father’s power as well as be exalted by Him publicly was Jesus. He is worthy of this dedication. Through rightfully placed faith and loyalty in Christ one suffers no fear. Fear’s spirit does not exist in believers, in the Father, in the Son or in the Holy Spirit. Fear’s spirit is replaced with power, love and a sound mind. (2 Tim 1:7)
In John 12:12-19 we find this testimony coming to full glory as people flock to the Eastern Gate, to Bethphage in the Mount of Olives. They came to meet Jesus and exalt Him. Jesus perfectly and completely displays the fruits of the spirit in His life (Gal 5:22-23).
We give all to those whom we pledge allegiance, even our lives. It’s no wonder that we find in Matthew 21 they the people even threw their cloaks down before Him as well as palm fronds. This was a very specific display to anoint Him, recognize Him as King of all Israel, see Him as the one unifier of the people of God. The hope in the hearts of Israel was given life, given light, even manifest through this one man, Jesus. While under the whip of Rome, oppressed, fearing death at a whim of a Roman soldier, Israel needed hope. We see a political parallel in our nation today as many fear we are loosing our national liberty to corrupt politicians.
Will we garner hope in Christ as the Jews did? Do we see our hope only in our national freedom, or do we find hope in being truly spiritually free in Christ? How often do we make the same mistake Israel made, we look here for freedom through our governors instead of looking to things eternal for freedom. True freedom and liberty is not worldly, it is heavenly.