ReDiscovering Lent-March 22

March_2222 March – Jo Ann De Belen, Office Director, World Relief Indonesia; Typhoon Relief, Philippines – God’s Rescue Project

Luke 1: 68-80

In the Old Testament, after the fall, God launched a rescue mission. Main objective: Restore His people to Himself. Throughout this project, God made covenants with the forefathers. Through Abraham He promised land, nationhood, blessings so that the people of Israel could bless the nations (Luke 1:73-75; Gen. 12:1-7). He promised David that from his line the Anointed One would arise and establish a permanent kingdom over all the earth, a King who would rule in righteousness and justice and bring perfect peace and freedom from oppression (Luke 1:69; 2 Sam. 7; Psalm 89). Through Jeremiah, He promised a new covenant, through which He would forgive sins and bring about transformation (Jer. 33:33). All of this points to the Messiah who was to come.

God’s rescue mission reached its triumphant conclusion in Jesus Christ in whom the promise of the forgiveness of sins has been fulfilled. The child in Mary’s womb, for whom the way was prepared by Zechariah’s son, John, was the Messiah! Like many Jews of his day, Zechariah waited eagerly for the coming of the Messiah in the hope that he and all Hebrew people could enjoy the fulfillment of God’s promises. Is it any surprise, then, that Zechariah broke into song when he met the promised Messiah?

Even now, we should be shouting praises and singing songs to God for Jesus’ arrival! Why? Finally, there is forgiveness of sins, the gateway to all that was promised to us through Abraham. No one will experience the fullness of the covenants apart from salvation and everyone who is saved will participate in the fulfillment of God’s promises. For this reason, we should constantly give thanks and praise. Thank you, Lord!

This also gives us the confidence not only to put our faith in Him but also to declare His name to the whole world. We can point to Jesus as the culmination of God’s rescue mission that started long ago. We can show that, if we put our faith in Jesus as the Messiah and repent of our sins, we will be forgiven and receive the promised blessings – a restored relationship with the Father, a permanent nation under a righteous King, peace that surpasses understanding, freedom from all oppression, a just society, security, and all the good things we have always longed for.



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