Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Tuesday - Watch in Hope for the LORD

Prayer:  Grant, O Lord, that as we are baptized into the death of thy blessed Son our saviour Jesus Christ, so by continual mortifying our corrupt affections we may be buried with him; and that through the grave, and gate of death, we may pass to our joyful resurrection; for his merits, who died, and was buried, and rose again for us, thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.     #655 Oxford Book of Prayers.

Read  St. Luke  12:  49 – 53

These are some weighty verses and like us,  the disciples must have been scratching their heads and saying to Jesus, “Huh?  What are you talking about?”

Jesus was looking into the future and knew that his time on earth was nearly completed.  Jesus’ mission could not be accomplished except by his death.   Baptism is what Jesus says his death will be--  “I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how I am constrained until it is accomplished!”  (St Luke 12:50 Revised Standard Version, 1946).   In Baptism,  we remember that when the water of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is poured over the person,  they are made new.  The blessing of the water is a visible sign to the congregation that the baptized person is now a new person in Christ Jesus.  The baptized person leaves their old life behind and becomes a new person in God the Father,  Jesus the Son,  and the Holy Spirit.     Water cleanses.  Fire cleanses.  
 But Jesus then says something odd to the disciples.  Jesus says that he did not come to give peace on earth but rather to bring about division within families and generations.  Huh?   This understanding of division comes directly out of the Prophet Micah 7:6.  Here the division is brought about because no one remembers the love of God.  The Prophet then says.... “But as for me,  I watch in hope for the LORD  I wait for God my Saviour;  my God will hear me” (Micah 7:6  NIV  Zondervan 1983).

Jesus is on the journey to Jerusalem  knowing that death was a huge probability.  Jesus heads to Jerusalem knowing that it was the will of God.  If death was waiting for him in Jerusalem,  then it was God’s will.  

“But as for me,  I watch in hope for the LORD.  I wait for God my Saviour; my God will hear me”.  These are comforting words of hope.  God always provides hope and love.  No matter what we do or say each day,  God continues to shower down upon us His love and His hope.   Alleluia!

Prayer:  In You,  O Lord,   we live out our days.  In You,  O Lord,  we live in Your hope so that when the evening shadows appear we may rest and abide in Your love and Your care and know that You are Our God.   Creator,  Sustainer, and Redeemer.  Amen.

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