This week we will step from Before Christ to the Common Era, and it's amazing - after all of God's longsuffering through His prophets - to open the story again, to see Him speak at last into the silence with the words of His angel to Zecharias and to Mary: first, "Do not be afraid, for your petition has been heard" and then, "Do not be afraid, for you have found favor with God."
After all the pain He has endured, after His Name has been trampled again and again by Israel, He still hears - He still finds favor.
He still sends His Son as one last messenger of repentance and salvation, even knowing that like the prophets, Jesus will be rejected, beaten, and killed.
We'll be in the Gospels for the next couple of weeks, reading back-to-back the different accounts of Jesus' life, ministry, death, and resurrection - so for now, I just want to meditate on a portion of Luke that we corporately prayed in church today:
And Mary said, "My soul exalts the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior. For He has had regard for the humble state of His bondslave; for behold, from this time on all generations will count me blessed. For the Mighty One has done great things for me; and holy is His name. And His mercy is upon generation after generation toward those who fear Him. He has done mighty deeds with His arm; He has scattered those who were proud in the thoughts of their heart. He has brought down rulers from their thrones, and has exalted those who were humble. He has filled the hungry with good things; and sent away the rich empty-handed. He has given help to Israel His servant, in remembrance of His mercy, as He spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and his descendants forever."
Even after it all, He has had regard.
He has done great things.
His mercy is upon generation after generation.
He has exalted the humble.
He has filled the hungry.
He has given help.
What joy in knowing that this is the God we serve - the God whose love will never let us go, who suffers long for His people to repent. My soul exalts the Lord!
Luke: God of the Outcast
Total read time: 2.5 hours