John 12:12-13, 19 On the next day much people that were come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, 13 Took branches of palm trees, and went forth to meet him, and cried, Hosanna: Blessed is the King of Israel that cometh in the name of the Lord. 19 The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, Perceive ye how ye prevail nothing? behold, the world is gone after him.
The passage above is part of the history of Palm Sunday. It marked Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem a week prior to His resurrection. As verses 12 and 13 show, Jesus had many followers at this time. The overwhelming throng of people caused the Pharisees to remark that the world had gone after Him (vs. 19). The rest of history shows that this was the calm before the storm.
Although Jesus had many who followed Him due to the many miracles He had done (see verses 17-18), these were “fair weather” followers who would desert Him less than a week later. The biblical record even shows that at the cross of Jesus, only one of his disciples, John, remained until the end The throngs were gone at that point. Things had certainly changed very quickly.
This made me wonder about the dedication of Christians today to the cause of Christ. Are most believers “fair weather” Christians who would desert the faith once the hard times come? It is troubling to think that of the many millions of people who claim to be Christian, most could have a superficial faith.
It is important to note that Jesus did not promise His followers an easy road (Matt. 5:11-12; 10:22; 24:9; Luke 21:17; et al.). We are to expect persecution. We are to expect that the world will hate us. However, those of us in the United State experience relatively little of this. What will happen if it does? We need to read the accounts of the disciples in the book of Acts. We need to read Paul’s accounts of His persecutions. We need to read Foxe’s Book of Martyrs and learn of the terrible tortures and deaths that saints have faced throughout history. We need to draw close to God in prayer and learn to trust Him through anything. We need to be like the apostles–doing what’s right regardless of the cost.