I like Ice Cream.
Usually, I'm most happy with a bowl of my favorite (Moose Tracks or Cookie Dough), but occasionally I like the pre-fab cones...the kind with the chocolate on the top, covered with crushed nuts. When I was a kid, we'd get those as a treat once in a while, but recently I noticed an improvement: Nowadays, at the bottom of the cone--when everything but the last bite is gone, I find that there's a chunk of chocolate on the inside of the cone--The Good Stuff! The Payoff! The Treasure at the end of the treat! I love it!
So...on a Spiritual plane, we've considered how we are to prepare, we consider our own "spiritual produce", we repent when we need to (see the last few blogs)...for what?
For the GOOD STUFF!
Jesus, having been baptized, having been tested by the devil and having overcome him by the Word of God, now goes into his home synagogue.
He gets up to speak, and the scroll of the Prophet Isaiah is handed to Him. He opens it and reads this:
"The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me,
for the Lord has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted
and to proclaim that captives will be released
and prisoners will be freed.
He has sent me to tell those who mourn
that the time of the Lord’s favor has come..." (Isaiah 61:1-2)
These words, prophesied centuries before Jesus' life on earth, were a promise...part of God's promise to His people of Israel that He would send a Messiah--a Savior and Rescuer. He would send them One who would make everything new, and would release them. This was a promise they had all been looking forward to for centuries!
That's what made Jesus' next words that much more important:
He rolled up the scroll, handed it back to the attendant, and sat down. All eyes in the synagogue looked at him intently. Then he began to speak to them. “The Scripture you’ve just heard has been fulfilled this very day!” Luke 4:20-21
Do you get what Jesus was saying to them? He was saying that, right then and there--in thier very presence--Isaiah's prophecy was coming true. In other words, He was saying that they didn't have to 'hope' any more--BECAUSE HE WAS THE MESSIAH AND THE SAVIOR they'd hoped for!
HE is the One who came to came to "bring good news to the poor"!
HE is the One who came to "Comfort the broken hearted"!
HE is the One who came to "Release the captives and free the prisoners"!
HE is the One who came to tell the mourners that "The time of the Lord's favor has come"!
Do you get this?!
THIS IS THE GOOD STUFF!
This means that Jesus was, is, and will always be, the Chosen One to bring us to God, and bring God down to us! He will comfort us, free us, and bring us GOOD news!
All of the talk we do about "considering the kind of Produce we produce"...the talk of "preparing a way for the Lord" in our hearts...all of that is pointing to this fact:
JESUS is the One who came to bring us the good stuff!
So...as you're going through your day today, as you're dealing with your own setbacks, discouragements, temptations, and struggles, remember: There is GOOD STUFF at the end! Jesus is the One who came to bring it, and He WILL bring it to YOU--if you turn to Him in true faith and follow Him with your life.
The Good Stuff...for this life, and for Eternity!
You gotta love it!
Seeking Him more,