“Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey.” Zechariah 9: 9
Approximately 500 years before the birth of Christ, Zechariah wrote these words, words that hail the coming Messiah. Zechariah lived during the time of Israel’s exile in Babylon. Uprooted from their homes and living in a strange land, the people of God longed for a Messiah to deliver them from captivity. This prophecy gave hope to those who were desperate for salvation. Both Matthew and John reference this verse in the gospels when Jesus makes his triumphal entry into Jerusalem. When Jesus entered the city riding on a donkey, shouts of Hosanna filled the air. The people rejoiced, and rightly so, that the Messiah had appeared. He came to seek and save those who are lost.
Like the Israelites, we too wait in hopeful expectation for the coming Messiah. Christmas is a time to remember his Incarnation, when the Word became flesh and pitched his tent among us. But it is also a time to look for his second coming, a time when he will wipe away every tear and conquer the grave once and for all. While we anticipate His return, let us “rejoice greatly,” for He has promised never to leave or forsake us.