In the middle of the crucifixion, Jesus cries out “My God! Why have You forsaken Me?” It’s a staggering exclamation. Jesus endured the physical agony of the crucifixion, but something happened just before He died that caused Him to cry out. Understanding that cry helps us understand the crisis of the human situation.
The Bible is filled with prayers and songs of sorrow and pain. These are often referred to as songs of lament. Even Jesus offers up His own lament during His crucifixion. Biblical authors express their grief to God in very different terms than we need to and for this reason it’s important to understand the biblical approach to lament. The Bible models an expression of grief to God that reveals quite a bit both about who God is and about how He wants to relate to us.
In the Bible we find the glory of God’s partnership with man. Throughout the redemptive story, God refuses to do anything without human partnership. He validates human processes and uses human beings. He sometimes waits long periods of time in order to labor with us. At the same time, He gives us assignments that require His own supernatural intervention. One one hand, He does His work through us, on the other hand we cannot do His work without His power. It is the glory of God’s partnership with man and Abraham’s struggle to have a son illustrates the pattern of how God works with man.
The author of Hebrews repeatedly demonstrates how Jesus is better in every way from what was available before. In light of what has come in Jesus, the author also gives believers several specific exhortations that each begin with “let us…” These statements are the author’s instructions on how we should respond to what has come in Jesus.
One of the great tragedies of western Christianity is that we do more remembering about Jesus than anticipating. However, the biblical view is that there is so much more to anticipate about Him then there is to remember. We are called to live with the longing and anticipation of an engaged woman, not the memories of a married woman.
God makes a bold prediction concern Zion and Jerusalem in Isaiah 62, and He intends us to hear the resolve in His voice and the strength of His determination. Given this, it focuses us to ask a question: how much do we understand His purposes for Zion and Jerusalem and how much of our ministry effort are we directing towards those goals?
Moses makes one of the most bold and amazing requests in Exodus 33:18-19. Imagine asking the God of the Exodus who has just crippled the most powerful nation on earth and terrified the nation of Israel with manifestations of His presence that you want to see even more of His glory. What gave Moses this kind of boldness? The answer is found in Exodus 33.
An audio message delivered at the Antioch Prayer Society Convocation for Prayer and Revival from Isaiah 6 on the call to live before the Lord as a priest in this age.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. – Matthew 5:4 (ESV) The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the LORD was sorry that he had made