Waiting for a Holy Handout?

by Wayne Barber

Wayne BarberEditor's note: In part 1, Brother Wayne discussed "the Hopeful Crowd" which greeted our Lord at His triumphal entry into Jerusalem (John 12). Today he analyzes the segment of the throng which chiefly hoped to get something from Jesus.

I call this crowd the Hallelujah Crowd because they loved the miracles that Jesus did, as if He was the best circus in town. They are around today! They love to shout and holler, but it's a shallow shout!

To this crowd it's all about what Jesus can do rather than who Jesus is! "So the people, who were with Him when He called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead, continued to testify about Him. For this reason also the people went and met Him, because they heard that He had performed this sign" (John 12:17-18).

Of course, this whole event follows chapter 11, in which Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead-to many of the Jews, the greatest miracle that He performed. Lazarus had been in the tomb for four days. Some superstitious Jews believed that the spirit hovered over the body for three days and then departed.

Jesus cries out "Lazarus! Lazarus!" And lo and behold Lazarus walked out of the tomb still wrapped in the grave clothes.

This caused a mixed reaction among the crowd, as many believed but many only ran to tell the Pharisees.

But it caused a crowd to begin to follow Jesus because of what He could do. This was the "Hallelujah Crowd"-or "the Hand-Out Crowd."

Next month: the "Hateful Crowd"

Wayne Barber is senior pastor of Hoffmantown Church in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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