February 15, 2023 –
I read the donkey dates back 3,000 years before the birth of Jesus. Although serving as a lowly beast of burden, the donkey served Mary and her son, Jesus. When we explore Jesus’ life, we discover the story of two donkeys. Each had a significant role in the life of Jesus. Two donkeys aptly named, “Privilege” and “Honor.”
“Privilege” had an important transportation role. Mary rode on him from Nazareth to Bethlehem. Christians believe Mary rode a donkey from Nazareth to Bethlehem just before the birth of Jesus. The Scriptures do not expressly state that she did; however, it is doubtful that Mary, who was in such an advanced pregnancy, walked from Nazareth to Bethlehem, a distance of about 90 miles. The grueling trip and stressful environment may have taken them from four to seven days. “Privilege” was entrusted with carrying the pregnant Mary. But it was the birth of Jesus and His triumphal entry into Jerusalem 33 years later that donkeys achieved their most significant accomplishments.
The second donkey, “Honor”, is the animal Jesus rode into Jerusalem to fulfill the Old Testament prophecy that the Messiah would come riding on the back of a donkey. The Old Testament prophet Zechariah, writing in 484 B.C. wrote, “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; He is just and endowed with salvation, Humble, and mounted on a donkey, Even on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” (Zechariah 9:9)
The Apostle Matthew adds, “Tell Daughter Zion, look, your King is coming to you, gentle, and mounted on a donkey, even on a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.” (Matthew 21:5, HCSB)
I believe. “Privilege” and “Honor” teach us it’s an honor to transport the Gospel and a privilege to share the Good News with humility.