Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Comfort and Joy

Fear not, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy that will be for all the people. -Luke 2:10

Not exactly what we would hear about if we turned on one of the news channels.

Yet the news that we would be shown is no news at all. Things go on as they have since Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden. We commit the same depredations against one another (we are all guilty to some degree or other, right?) as we always have.

Each time I think I have heard of something new and even more depraved than before, careful reflection shows me I am wrong. Truly, the Preacher said, "There is nothing new under the sun."

I try to read Ecclesiastes once a year to remind me that things haven't really changed in three thousand years.

Ah, but "behold, I am doing a new thing," says the LORD God of Hosts. There is good news. And you and I, my brothers and sisters, have been put here to proclaim it.

God has been working all this time to reclaim fallen creation and redeem a people for himself.

He saved godly Noah from the Flood. He called Abram out of Ur.

He preserved His people down in Egypt. He brought them out again with a mighty hand. He prepared a table for them in the midst of their enemies.

Even when they were unfaithful, He preserved a remnant.

He arranged the affairs of nations so that there be a common language  in the Middle East of the First Century.

That a virgin would conceive and bear a child, "God with us."

That this child, grown into a man would make the perfect sacrifice and God would raise Him on the third day and draw His people to Him.

That there would be Roman roads to travel upon and Roman peace to protect the travelers, so that the good news would spread rapidly.

And so on and on, down to our present day, when the bottom seems about to fall out and many are saying, "Here is Christ," or "There He is."

That, too, is the same as it ever was. We pray for the hastening of that Day and look forward to it as did all the saints before us, and cry out, "How long, O LORD!"

Meanwhile, we have a job to do. There is Good News to be shared. In the words of the old song from my childhood:

"Stop, and let me tell you, what the Lord has done for me!"

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