Money: If you do not remember Erick Salgado, Sal Albanese, or Adolfo Carrión, Jr., it might be because you only saw their names once—in an NYC voting booth on November 5, 2013. Money might not have been their only campaign problem, but it was a big one. After all, the winner, Bill de Blasio, outraised each of them by more than $4 million dollars and, although money doesn’t always secure victory (Quinn outraised de Blasio by $3 million), the conventional wisdom is that it’s a proxy for support and represents competitive strength. It stands to reason, then, if you want to win a campaign, you want money. Lots of it.
Proclamation: Jesus launched his campaign in Galilee, where he proclaimed, “The kingdom of God is at hand”  and healed “every disease and every affliction” . Three years later, he drew near to Jerusalem to secure his campaign by his own death. Riding on a donkey, he entered Jerusalem as crowds were shouting, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”  Yes, they knew the ancient prophecy: “Behold, your king is coming to you, humble, and mounted on a donkey.”  They knew, when he got on that donkey, he was saying, “I am king.”
Donkey: Yet there was a problem. A king was already in power—Herod Antipas, the would be “king of the Jews.”  He had loads of resources to quash anyone—especially a poor, itinerant carpenter from a country town—who threatened his power. And Jesus knew it. Instead of coming with might and money, however, Jesus came with mercy and kindness. He came on a donkey because this is his essence—a humble king, ready to die for his people so that they might be redeemed, healed, and ushered into the presence of the Father.
Prayer: Lord, You are a great king, abounding in humility and love. When you launched your campaign and secured its victory, you did what no modern-day political figure would ever choose to do—you introduced yourself with humility and laid down your life as an offering. We pray, therefore, that you would shape our hearts to love the gospel message of mercy, meekness, and sacrifice. Help us live out this truth no matter how counterintuitive and difficult it may be. Amen.
M’Cheyne Weekend Readings
 Matthew 4:17 |  Matthew 9:15 |  Matthew 21:9 |  Matthew 21:5 |  Herod Antipas is the same Herod that beheaded John the Baptist, Jesus’ cousin and dear friend. Herod Antipas’ father was Herod the Great, whose official title (given by the Roman Empire) was “King of the Jews” because he was the Roman ruler in charge of Judea and Samaria (even though he himself was not Jewish, which was understandably problematic). Herod Antipas ruled the region of Galilee, even though Rome did not extend to him the title it had bestowed upon his father. Nonetheless, he was just as brutal as his father.