Monday, April 11, 2022

         This Holy Week is a story of faithfulness.  The Father was faithful to create a plan to save the world and to redeem the world from sin and slavery.  The Son was faithful to carry out the Father’s plan.  You may remember that when Jesus was praying just after the Last Supper that He prayed “not my will, but your will, Father.”  Jesus was willing to follow the way that the Father had placed before Him.  The Holy Spirit brings us to faith in the person of Jesus and an understanding of the Father’s plan.  Psalm 36 says that God’s faithfulness stretches to the skies.  And this week, we learn that God’s faithfulness stretches from Palm Sunday to Easter, from the triumphal entry to the triumphal resurrection from the dead.  God presided over every event of Holy Week and brought to conclusion every plan and purpose that He initiated for the salvation of the world long before the foundations of the earth were put into place.
            This Holy Week is also a love story.  Psalm 36:6 says, “Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies.”  We learn that God loved the world so much that he gave His only begotten Son so that whoever believes in Him would not perish but have everlasting life.  Jesus loved us enough to lay down His life in exchange for ours.  He loved us enough to leave His place beside and with the Father to become our substitute at Calvary’s cross.  He loves us enough in April of 2022 to remain with us always through the presence and fellowship of His Holy Spirit.  Psalm 36:7 says, “How priceless is your unfailing love, O God!  People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.” God’s unfailing love pursued us and found us and saved us.  Holy Week drives home the lesson that the Almighty and Incomparable God never ceased to love His people and was compelled by His love to gather His people to forgiveness through His saving grace.
            The crowd that welcomed Jesus quickly turned against Him.  His faithfulness was met by their unfaithfulness and His love was met by their anger and indifference toward Him.  Imagine having the Lord walking and living in your midst yet turning away from Him.  Martin Luther has written that we need to hear the gospel every day because we possess a terrible tendency to forget it every day.  We lose sight of the gospel in the face of temptation, busyness, discouragement and defeat.  Holy Week is a time for us to focus with tunnel vision on what the gospel means to each of us.  The gospel comes to us at a great price.  The Father crushed His Son with the full weight of sin and divine wrath because there was no other way for us to be rescued and saved from the snare of sin.  Sin had fully encircled and enslaved us. 
            The great English Puritan preacher of the seventeenth century, John Flavel, has written, “There is no doctrine more excellent in itself or more necessary to be preached and studied, than the doctrine of Christ, and Him crucified.”  This story bears repeating again and again.  And this special week comes every year to remind us about the great Gospel story that has been entrusted to each one of us.  We are God’s people—made by Him, redeemed by Him and living for Him.  We long for the day when we will be gathered with Him forevermore.  David Brainerd once wrote, “My soul rested in God; and I found I wanted no other refuge or friend.”  We are restless people until we choose to rest in the only suitable place...the presence of God, the plans of God and the peace of God.  As this week unfolds, remember the presence of God.  Give thanks that the plans of God include you.  And may the peace of God surround you.  Remember you can always share our worship at youtube.com/FirstBaptistKannapolis.   
             

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