The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God, 2 as it is written in Isaiah the prophet:
“I will send my messenger ahead of you,
who will prepare your way”—
3 “a voice of one calling in the wilderness,
‘Prepare the way for the Lord,
make straight paths for him.’” --Mark 1:1-3
As I mentioned in a post
about 10 days ago, the passage quoted here in Mark is from Isaiah and relates initially to the return of those in exile in Babylon to Jerusalem.
It figures in prominently to the gospel, because the story of Jesus is about a massive path to freedom and restoration. Just as the people are encouraged to prepare the way for the Lord--make room for all those who will leave Babylon and pass through the desert to return to their homeland, the message of Jesus leads to the same sort of exhortation as Jesus comes on the scene.
Clear the way! So many people are going to be freed, are going to return home--you'll need to make straight paths for them.
But notice--it's not the people who the highway is made for--the straight paths are made for the Lord. He's going to walk the path first. He's making the journey.
The Lord comes to earth in the normal way, born as a baby, experiences all the normal things of this human life and then drinks down all the bitterness of betrayal, rejection and crucifixion. And then--resurrection.
He opens a way to new life and freedom that leads so many out of Babylon and back to home.
This Christmas, Jesus leads us to a new life and new freedom. For the addict, for the liar, for the hater, for the sinner who wants to find the way out--the Lord has walked the path through the wilderness--he's prepared a highway through the wilderness. Start walking home...
Labels: advent, Christianity, Christmas, freedom, gospel, Jesus Christ, New Testament, Old Testament, prophecy, spirituality