Today you should read: Mark 11:1-33
“Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna in the highest.”
You’ve probably said this or sang this the week before we celebrate Easter and the resurrection of Christ. This comes from today’s Scripture when Jesus was arriving to Jerusalem and people were singing his praises as the great teacher, miracle worker he was but this praise did not last long. Of course this was after Jesus cursed a dead fig tree, using it as a metaphor for Israel’s standing before God and turned the tables at the Jerusalem temple, accusing them of turning it into a den of robbers. Jesus went from Hosanna to hooligan just like that.
Sometimes we can experience something similar within the church. Sometimes we experience an amazing season of spiritual fruit, of revival, of multiplication and healing and it’s very easy for others to tag along and proclaim “Hosanna.” But sometimes the fruit seems to stop and the amazing witness turns into hypocrisy like what was seen in the temple. The outsiders and people who were praising God soon criticize and denounce. And through those seasons we must remember that God is sovereign and that God can use it.
I’m reminded of this great truth with a song that came out a few weeks ago. It was written by a worship band that experienced such a trial when a popular well known church fell apart because of the perceived hypocrisy from it’s unhealthy, sinful culture within. This was an amazing Gospel preaching, Bible teaching church that was known as one of the fastest growing churches in one of the most unchurched cities in the United States and it went from 15,000 people attending to within a year and a half closing down it’s doors. Media and lost people had a field day with it. At one time the city praised all of the good the church was doing and within a year and a half they demonized it. There’s been a ton of hurt in it’s falling out but as this song suggests God was sovereign and is in the redeeming business. Sometimes God wants to use us to turn the tables He flipped to create something beautiful out of it. In fact there’s several healthy, thriving churches that was created out of this and just like Jesus was crucified after the praise, He uses that crucifixion to give us new life. As the songs says He can “Paint the beauty we split, Write redemption a script.”
If you have time, listen to the song below and think about how God can redeem our sins and hypocrisy that people seem to so quickly turn against us with at times.
• What has God made beautiful out of ashes in your life? Share in the comments below.
By: Erik Koliser — West Campus Pastor