7. God used a donkey to speak His judgment!
Yes, Balaam’s donkey actually warns the prophet of His disobedience. In Numbers 22, Moses writes:
“… Then the Lord opened the donkey’s mouth, and it said to Balaam, ‘What have I done to you to make you beat me these three times?’ Balaam answered the donkey, ‘You have made a fool of me! If only I had a sword in my hand, I would kill you right now.’ The donkey said to Balaam, ‘Am I not your own donkey, which you have always ridden, to this day? Have I been in the habit of doing this to you?’ ‘No,’ he said. Then the Lord opened Balaam’s eyes, and he saw the angel of the Lord standing in the road with his sword drawn. So he bowed low and fell facedown. The angel of the Lord asked him, ‘Why have you beaten your donkey these three times? I have come here to oppose you because your path is a reckless one before me.’”
Samson defeated the Philistines with the jawbone of an ass. (Judges 15:15).
God sent a lion to devour a false prophet in 1 Kings 13:27-31, while his donkey safely stood and watched. The lion did not eat the donkey. The donkey carried the slain prophet back home at God’s behest.
King Jehu rode a donkey into Samaria, a kind of false Jerusalem, in order to destroy the temple of the false god Baal (2 Kings 9:11-10:28).
Christ entered Jerusalem’s temple and pronounced judgment as He overturned the money-changer’s tables in Matthew 21:12:
“My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves.”
8. Jesus demonstrated that he was the burden-bearer who came to save us.
Baby Jesus was born in humility. Remember, a donkey carried a poor, pregnant mother named Mary all the way from Nazareth to Bethlehem. (Luke 2:4-7). This gentle beast of burden carried the Savior of the World. Jesus used the image of Mary’s donkey to connect with the common people. He came for them.
Jesus embraced the poor, weak and oppressed during his time here on earth. Christ’s sweet, simple story of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:33-34 is a perfect symbol of his love and compassion:
“But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him.”
The Bible is rich in symbolism. Enjoy the triumphal entry in a deeper way this year.