Moment in the Word
Thu, 03/16/2023 - 11:37am admin
Isaiah 61:1-2 - The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me; he has sent me to preach glad tidings to the poor, to heal the broken in heart, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind; 2 to declare the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of recompence; to comfort all that mourn. (Brenton's 1851 Greek Septuagint)
In Luke 4:14-17, we read that Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him. He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where this week's Scripture was written.
Many in the audience were outraged because they thought He spoke blasphemy by claiming to personally fulfill this passage. However, they did not realize that God had sent His Son to "give to them that mourn in Sion glory instead of ashes, the oil of joy to the mourners, the garment of glory for the spirit of heaviness" so they could be called "generations of righteousness, the planting of the Lord for glory." (Isaiah 61:3, Brenton's 1851 Greek Septuagint)
Sadly, while the crowd plotted to kill Jesus for His ministry, He was not serving His own selfish agenda but was accomplishing His Heavenly Father's will to prepare them for glory! What a tragic irony, but this was also predestined by God!
Today, many Spirit-filled Christians do not understand that they are anointed for the same mission as Christ, "To preach glad tidings to the poor, to heal the broken in heart, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind; to declare the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of recompence; to comfort all that mourn."
How can we be sure that God has given us the ministry of His Son? Jesus said, "Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father." (John 14:12)
We probably cannot perform any greater kind of miracle than Christ, but we have done more in scope than He did. Although Jesus scarcely traveled 200 miles from His hometown, yet His Church has spread the Gospel around the entire world with miraculous signs confirming God's Word!
For this reason, Jesus praised His faithful followers, "Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me."
Then the righteous answered, "Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?"
He replied, "Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me." (Matthew 25:34-40)
Knowing this, let us always remember St. Paul's admonition, "Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers." (Galatians 6:7-10)
So, don't give up! Whatever good work that God has given you to do, keep on doing until Jesus comes, so you can hear Him say, "Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord!" (Matthew 25:23)