“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.”
Jesus always spoke the truth with divine love. As He was confronted by the pious religious leaders of His day He spoke these words to them, which are also found in Luke 13:36.
Although Jesus went about doing only good, the religious leaders sought to find fault with Him and reasons to destroy His message. In the prior verses in Matthew 23, Jesus calls out the hypocrisy of these so called godly men. Jesus exposes their motives and misuse of the laws, yet He ends His reprimand with a loving statement.
Even though the Pharisees and other religious leaders had turned away from Him, Jesus reminded them that time after time He had longed to gather them to the safety of His side. He still loved them. Just as a mother hen protects her chicks, so the Lord Jesus wanted to protect His people. But sadly, they were not willing to let Him.
And so it is with us today too. Many times we reject the peace and safety that Jesus can give. Why? Pride, arrogance, an unwillingness to change, indifference to a situation all can cause us to turn away from a Lord that only wants what is best for us. He loves us too, and He desires a close relationship with us.
Let us always be willing to be drawn close to our wonderful Savior. James 4:8 reminds us, “Come near to God and He will come near to you”. Through prayer and dedication, we too can experience this place of blessed peace and security near to our Lord and Savior.