A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Monday, December 2, 2019
"Lessons From A Blank Page"
Message summary: God has fulfilled the biggest promise. Let us wait with faith and assurance that "in His time" He will also take care of the scores of other matters we all deal with. He is faithful!
Listen to this message on your audio player.
"But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son" (Galatians 4:4).
Yesterday was the first Sunday in Advent when we especially give attention to the first advent (coming) of Christ.
There's a page in each of our Bibles we don't read and probably have never given any consideration to. It's the blank page found in many Bibles separating the Old and New Testaments. Now to be sure there may be another reason printers use this blank page and as more and more people read their Bibles on devices the concept of this blank page may not be apparent.
On the photo to the left you can see the blank page in my Bible with the final page of the Old Testament barely bleeding through. On the next page it states simply "The New Testament".
Today let us consider this wordless blank page and what it represents. There was a 400 year period that separated the final record in the Old Testament (Malachi) from the events in the New Testament beginning with Matthew's Gospel. In secular history this was when Alexander the Great lived during the Greek Empire and the ascent of the Roman Empire. There are also some extra-Biblical records during this period recorded in the Apocrypha.
The blank page represents several things I can think of such as silence, hope and waiting, which we will consider today.
Do you have a hard time waiting? Are delays difficult to deal with causing you stress and anxiety? For most of us the answer is "yes." God had first promised the Messiah after Adam and Eve's transgression in the garden. Over the next several millenniums there was a growing body of Messianic promises that the Jewish people were given. But they waited and waited and waited.
At the time of Christ's birth two elderly Jewish people are mentioned in Luke who had waited for the Messiah's coming. Simeon had been "waiting for the consolation of Israel", and Anna "spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem".
In the daily text the Apostle Paul is reflecting on the events of Christ's incarnation. He uses an intriguing phrase "But when the fullness of the time came" to describe that wonderful moment in space and time when God acted on our behalf in sending His Son for our redemption. The long wait was over. The faith of devout people like Simeon and Anna and others like them was now reality. God kept His promise.
And God still keeps His promises. He always will. He'll keep everyone of them. We have the perspective of looking back and seeing the fulfillment of the greatest of God's promises when "God sent forth His Son". This occurred after a long wait and not until "the fullness of the time came".
We must recognize that it's the fullness of God's time, not ours. Many of us are waiting for God's promises to be fulfilled in our lives. The wait is very trying. Many are living with an ongoing burden for spiritually wayward family members, others have a long-standing physical ailment in their lives or in someone they love. And on my heart this morning are so many of our dear brothers and sisters living in very oppressive conditions. And we all wait for that next great cosmic event when Jesus again keeps His last word to us when He declared, "Yes, I am coming soon".
God has fulfilled the biggest promise. Let us wait with faith and assurance that "in His time" He will also take care of the scores of other matters we all deal with. He is faithful!
In His time, in His time;
He makes all things beautiful in His time.
Lord, please show me every day
As You're teaching me Your way
That You do just what You say in Your time.
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, we know that Your time table is pre-ordained in the events that make an eternal difference in our lives. Thank you that when the fullness of the time came, You sent forth Your Son in the first advent. In this age help us to patiently wait for Your will to be fulfilled in our personal lives, in the lives of our loved ones, and in the world around us. May we be found steadfast, sober, expectant and alert awaiting the day of your second advent, your promised return. In the precious name of Jesus. Amen.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"In His Time" Video Maranatha! Music
"Here Comes Heaven" Video Calvary Church worship team and congregation from yesterday's service.
Last Friday we shared a message about a word scramble game we used around our table on Thanksgiving. We also posted the scrambled words for any who wanted to try to unscramble them. Below are the answers:
1. Lalf fall
2. ggniivknhaTs Thanksgiving
3. mlPas 010 Psalm 100
4. seevla leaves
5. socnra acorns
6. rracrynbe cranberry
7. onrc corn
8. gimrlpi pilgrim
9. stehvra harvest
10. tfololab football
11. mPlyhotu Plymouth
12. ekar rake
13. ingrghtae gathering
14. ertkyu turkey
15. ffutsngi stuffing
16. ppnimuk pumpkin
17. kstcimrud drumstick
18. revca carve
19. tfsae feast
20. mha ham
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