Words from the Heart for Friday December 9th, 2016
…a voice of one calling in the wilderness, “Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.”
Mark 1:3 (NIV)
Prepare the Way for the Lord
God’s plan has always been to bring His people out of slavery and sin. He rescues His people from the eternal consequences of disobedience by the death and resurrection of Jesus. How has God brought you out of the captivity of sin? Is there someone to whom you can share this life-changing message?
Tommy Douglas, father of Canada’s national health care system, gave a speech during a Saskatchewan provincial by-election in 1959 that proved to be prophetic. He said “The Government of Saskatchewan is convinced that the time has arrived when we can establish a prepaid medical care plan in our march toward a comprehensive health insurance program that will cover all our people, and will ensure a high standard of medical care to every citizen of Saskatchewan . . . If we can do this — then I would like to hazard a prophecy that, before 1970, almost every other province in Canada will have followed the lead of Saskatchewan, and we shall have a national health insurance program from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Let us therefore have the vision and the courage to take this forward step believing that it is another advance toward a more just and humane society.”
God’s plan to send the Messiah was carefully laid out in the Hebrew Scriptures long before Jesus ever stepped into our world. Through Moses and the prophets, God spoke clearly about His plan to redeem the world and in Isaiah 40 he tells of sending one who would prepare the way for the Messiah. The New Testament tell us that John the Baptist was the one chosen for this role. Mark 1:3 says “””…a voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’” The people of Israel had been waiting for generations for the arrival of the Messiah. Just as the second coming of Christ is the great hope of the Christian, so the coming of the Messiah the first time was that hope for the Jewish people. They understood that one would come who would prepare the hearts of those who would become the followers of the Messiah and Mark 1:4 tells us that role belonged to John the Baptist. And he did well at what God called him to do. Many of Jesus’ followers had been John’s disciples. He had taught them the need for repentance and commitment to God and he had prepared their hearts to follow Jesus. The Holy Spirit does that now. How has he been preparing your heart lately?
These have been words from the heart.