What Makes a Strong Man Weep

Amy Clemens

Read: Luke 19:33-46

And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace!” (vv. 41-42)

The night of Jesus’ birth, angels announce “on earth peace, good will toward men” (Luke 2:14 KJV). Now, years later, Jesus faces death. He is less than five miles from the place the angels sang when he begins to weep. His tears are for a city—a people of God—who don’t understand that peace.

Jerusalem, literally interpreted, means “city of peace.” Jesus, more than any other man or woman in history, can see the chasm between what God dreamed, and what sin wrought. It’s not hard to imagine that God weeps at the tragedy, too. Tantamount to a soldier sacrificing so deeply on the battlefield, only to come home and find he is neither valued nor celebrated, Jesus feels the overwhelming betrayal that his peace, God’s peace, has been rejected. The people he loves favor cheap substitutes—lies, pride, idols, addictions—whatever can be bought and sold in the temple by the moneychangers, who can turn any sanctuary into a marketplace.

Jesus dies that week to usher in fully the promise of peace between God and humans (Rom. 5:1). The veil is torn from the top, signaling invitation and welcome. The things that make for peace are finished. —Amy Clemens

Prayer: God, help me lay down my incompetent warring and move through the curtain. There is peace between me and the King! Color every corner of life with this good news.