Saturday after Ash Wednesday
Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the Gospel of God, and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the Gospel." (Mark 1:14-15)
"After John was arrested ..." Can you hear the despair in that sentence? I suspect a lot of John's followers were deeply disturbed when King Herod threw John in jail—and even worse, when he murdered him. If I had been there, I would have been asking, "Why did God allow this to happen? Why take our teacher and prophet away, and leave us sitting in darkness?" They did not know—could not have known—that God was already doing something greater than they could ever dream of. God Himself had come to earth as the Man Jesus Christ. God had come in His own Person to rescue and save and deliver His people. Yes, John was a great prophet—the greatest!—but Jesus was more than that, the One that all the prophets pointed to—from Moses onward. Now that John is off the stage, Jesus moves to the center. He is no fool—He knows perfectly well that His teaching and preaching and healing will all end up with an execution outside Jerusalem in a very few years. John's fate points to Jesus' destiny. And because He loves us so much, Jesus goes ahead full speed, preaching the Good News to all of us: "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent, and believe the Gospel!" Let us listen to Him. THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus, when I walk in darkness, help me to trust in You. Amen. Reflection Questions: * Do you sleep with a nightlight? Why or why not? * Do you ever think of brighter days in the past? If so, when were they? * How do you find strength and comfort in God when you are living through dark days? Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo. *Special Gospel bonus for your leap year day: "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16).
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