“They had 736 horses, 245 mules, 435 camels, and 6,720 donkeys.” (Nehemiah 7:68-69)
Nehemiah chapter 7 is one of those “genealogical” chapters, where there are long lists of names and numbers. Folks often come to those chapters in their Bible reading and move on to the next chapter without a list. These couple of verses above seem to have little spiritual importance, given that they just number the animals the exiles brought back with them to Jerusalem, so what might be there that merits our time and attention?
Consider Mark 11:7, “They brought the donkey to Jesus and threw their robes on it, and He sat on it.”
The time had drawn near for Jesus to be crucified. The centuries old prophecies of Zechariah had to be fulfilled that their King would come to them, riding on a donkey. Jesus sent two of His disciples to the village ahead with an instruction. Upon entering the village they would find a donkey tied to a post. They were to untie it and bring it. If anyone questioned them, they were to respond, “The Lord needs it and will send it back right away.” It happened just that way, so they brought the donkey to Jesus. He rode it into Jerusalem in the event we call “the triumphant entry.”
From the 6,720 donkeys that returned to Jerusalem with the exiles descended the donkey that was appointed for the Messiah to ride into Jerusalem. That donkey had to be in that village, tied up, and ready to go at just the precise time it was needed in order to fulfill the prophecy. It was not coincidental. It was planned by God and coordinated by God from ages past.
That is what we Christians call “sovereign.” It was a simple little donkey, but God had to coordinate an infinite number of variables to fulfill that prophecy of Zechariah. Only a sovereign God can do that. And a God who is capable of doing this certainly has no problem knowing everything going on in your life and mine. He has no problem bringing His purposes for us to fruition as long as we submit ourselves to those purposes. Today, would you reaffirm your commitment to God’s purposes for your life?
Lord, We bow before You and reaffirm our commitment to Your purposes for us, and we thank You that You are fully capable of carrying out those purposes. Amen.