Posted by: pmarkrobb | December 16, 2017

Coming…

What is the span of a single page turn in your beloved Bible? Is it measured in inches? What distance does your hand travel as it sweeps left or right? If these questions referred specifically to the one which turns from Malachi to Matthew, the answer would be 400 years.

A people in brutal exile had returned to their homeland. Another cycle of rebellion and rescue was ending. Their return was far from glorious. The soil was their own, but the sovereignty was not. They had returned to their land, but not necessarily to their God. Through the words of the final prophet, Israel is reminded of God’s love for them. They are reminded of God’s sparing. The rinse/repeat nature of their rejection of God was always answered with radical rescue. It was not always near, but it was always certain. The failure of God’s people could (and would) not cause God to fail in His promise.

As the final chapter of the final prophet’s book begins, God steps onto the stage to address His people.  His message … the day is coming.

For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble. The day that is coming shall set them ablaze, says the Lord of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch. But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings. You shall go out leaping like calves from the stall. And you shall tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day when I act, says the Lord of hosts.
Malachi 4:1-3 (ESV)

God steps off the stage and the house lights go dark.

Four hundred years of dark.

Four.

Hundred.

Years.

And then, all at once, the day comes.

Except, it was not the day God’s people were longing for. It was the day that would make that day possible, but it was not the day they hoped was coming.

On that day, God hung the most brilliant light in the sky. Its unparalleled brightness guided shepherds and magi. It pierced and punctuated four hundred years (and thousands more before them) of darkness. God, through the voice of His angel, shouted the good news of great joy.

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
Luke 2:11 (ESV)  

On that day that no one saw coming, and only a precious few noticed, our Deliverer came.  Hope was born that day. Our Hope.  But God’s redemptive plan was not completed on that day.  That day was still coming. Thirty-three years later, before the sun would rise on the greatest Sunday in history, the sun (Son) of righteousness rose with healing in his wings.  But our final healing was not completed on that day.  That day is still coming.

Each Advent, I am reminded that Christmas is not the season of glad tidings of great joy for everyone.  Many are still lost.  Many hurt deeply.  Jesus was born. He lived, died and rose again.  In dying, He paid the penalty for every sin (mine, your’s, the sins of all for all time).  In rising, He broke the power of sin and death forever. And yet the groans of the curse still remain.  We still toil.  We still suffer.  Today may find you in one of those seasons.  Maybe you’re joining the chorus of the ancients in wondering, “Where is God?!” in a desert wandering of your own.  Maybe it seems like three hundred and ninety-nine years of silence in response to something you’ve been pleading for.  If that is you, may I please echo back the capital “T” truth that the day is coming.  This world is one giant waiting room.  Creation waits.  He asks us to wait (in things both great and small).  Please hear the truth that the day is coming.

God created this world.

He entered it once to redeem it.

And the day is coming where He will enter it again to make it new.

He will enter it again to complete the words He spoke through the final prophet.  He will enter it again to make things right, and to bring us home to be with Him for a number of days that will never end.

My dear friend in Jesus, and my dear friend who needs Him … the day is coming.


Responses

  1. Come Lord Jesus, Come!


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