In this season of resolutions and "becoming a new person," we invite you to join us on a journey in the seven weeks leading to Lent. Come and discover more about the baby we celebrated in the manger.
Just like you, this baby is more than what he seems. And as mysterious as that sounds, it is all expained and laid out for us in God's Word.
You can become a new person this year - a child of God and a citizen of His Kingdom, dedicated to seeking His will every day and in every action.
Need to start at the beginning? Read Week 1 Here
Glimpses of the Messiah are all over the Bible. There are over 300 clues in the Old Testament that point us to the coming Jesus.
Sometimes the clues are found in unexpected stories. For example, in Genesis 22:1-14, Abraham is ordered by God to sacrifice his only son, Isaac, the son whose arrival he awaited for decades. The last thing Abraham wanted to do was take his son’s life. He could hardly believe God was asking him to do such a horrific act.
But Abraham knew God’s character. He could trust God even though he couldn’t fathom how this situation would work out in the end. He simply knew God had a plan and would take care of it.
Abraham built an altar, as instructed, and was readying to sacrifice his son when an angel of the Lord cried out to him to stop.
The story goes on in verses 13-14:
And Abraham lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him was a ram, caught in a thicket by his horns. And Abraham went and took the ram and offered it up as a burnt offering instead of his son.
And there we see Jesus. God provided a ram—a male sheep. Not a cow or a horse, or even a female sheep. The sacrifice God requires is a lamb, a male sheep, and God provided it, just as Abraham trusted He would.
It is for this reason we celebrate Easter—the day God provided Jesus, the Lamb of God, His own Son, to be the sacrifice for your sins and mine. The day God provided a better alternative to the separation that has kept us from Him since the Garden of Eden. The day God showed us we can trust in His plan for our earthly and eternal lives.
Imagine how different Abraham's story would be if he hadn't trusted God's plan.
The Bible is full of stories of people who tried to do God's will in their own way, lacking the trust of Abraham, and instead trusting in their own wisdom and strength. (None of them fathered a nation as numerous than the stars!)
Now, imagine how different your life could be if you did trust God wholeheartedly to lead you down His path for His glory.
We serve the God of Ephesians 3:20: the God who can accomplish infinitely more than we ask or can even think.
Perhaps you’re saying, “But I don’t see it. I don’t see it.”
It's hard to shake off the limits of our past, but, if you can choose to step out in faith, you will see God's light shining in your life and in the lives of those to whom you reach out.
In John 10:10, Jesus said, “The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy.”
The devil wants to steal your hope. He wants to kill your dream, and he wants to destroy the potential for your work in God's Kingdom. The enemy tries to kill your confidence and break your trust in God. But at the same time, Jesus is trying to breathe life into you. He is saying, “I’ve come to give you life and life more abundantly. Trust me. Don’t let those negative thoughts build up in your mind. Follow me.”
As we look toward Easter and the cross, we thank God for the alternative to an eternal separation from Him. We thank Him for the sacrifice of His Son and the new life we receive through Jesus. Ask Him to help you trust Him wholeheartedly and dedicate your life to His purpose even if you can't see the endgame. And we Follow Jesus.