Jesus The Redeemer
MATERIAL IS DATED!
It's happening all over the world! World tragedies! To name a few, school shootings taking the lives of our young
ones who are the men and women of tomorrow's world. Terrorists' acts that have no regard for life and are killing
themselves and others. The list goes on.
Living in this 21st century we face many challenges! We are in the midst of pressure! The world is moving fast! An example, the threat of North Korea that has just tested its most powerful long-range missile that is capable of reaching the United States. ISIS, though on the run is still considered to be dangerous! With such occurrences, one might well ask, what is the joy of Christmas?
For the Christians and for someone who might be looking for a word of encouragement, I read from the Bible the Book of Job, (many Christians know of that Book) lived a man that lost everything of material possession that one would count necessary for life sustenance. This man feared God, kept His law but without warning in a single day he lost everything. All his earthly possessions were gone and his seven children were taken from him in death. The Book opened to us by telling us that Satan went to God about Job and ask permission to strip him of everything and then afflict him personally. Job was covered with boils all over that gave him no relief. He sat in the ash in a state of anguish, a state of torment, a state of agony. To make matters worse his friends wondered what he could have done to undergo such misery. When Job's wife could not handle the situation any longer; she told him to just curse God and died. Can one person go through so much and their faith is not challenged? What was the point of it all? Yet Job held on his faith that said in chapter 19:25-27.
For I know that my Redeemer lives,
And He shall stand at last on the earth;
26 And after my skin is destroyed, this I know,
That in my flesh I shall see God,
27 Whom I shall see for myself,
And my eyes shall behold, and not another.
What was devastating for Job was that he couldn't find his God! He speaks out in chapter 23:25
“Look, I go forward, but He is not there,
And backward, but I cannot perceive Him;
9 When He works on the left hand, I cannot behold Him;
When He turns to the right hand, I cannot see Him.
10 But He knows the way that I take;
When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold.
11 My foot has held fast to His steps;
I have kept His way and not turned aside.
12 I have not departed from the commandment of His lips;
I have treasured the words of His mouth
More than my necessary
Job had no idea that when he cried out that God answered his prayers even though he couldn’t see God nor felt His presence. There’s a little refrain that reads, "God answers prayer in the morning" God answers prayer at noon, God answers prayers in the evening so keep your heart in tune."
Can I tell you that out of this desperation and agonizing fear! Out of this suffering, out of this distress, out of this grief a light shone through for this man! He was weak and helpless, but a bright light came through the darkness for him. Later down in Book of Job, is it shown that God restored Job of all that he lost and more. He also had seven other children and his later days were better than his first! [Job 43:12-13]
Through the eyes of faith, Job saw a light. A Redeemer would come to deliver. Job saw that the Redeemer would come and cut through the darkness and barriers and delivered him. If not in this life he knew he had a hope in God in the life to come. He says, "After my skin has been destroyed [i.e., after his body has died], then 'out of' [or 'apart from'] my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see for myself, and my eyes shall behold, and not another."
The Book of Job is said to be the oldest book even before Abraham and Moses' time and even at that time, God would allow Job to see God as his Redeemer.
Today, Christ is our Redeemer; he came over 2,000 years ago at a time when the world was in turmoil under the leadership of Rome. The people were heavily taxed by Caesar Augusta, Roman Governor [St. Luke 2] to build Rome's military army. The people were corrupting under pagan laws. God’s people who were taken out of bondage from Egypt were still under bondage. Christ came at God's timing and nothing could stop or prevent His coming to save us and made us free. He cut through the course of death burial and resurrection to redeem His people. The Gospel of Luke tells us that He would be born a babe like us, identify with us and deliver us. The Gospel of John speaks that He is fully God and fully man. [St. John 1:14] "The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us" Christ came to deliver us from the bondage of sin and to redeem us unto Himself into a life of joy and peace.
Our situations may seem hopeless and we may not see any way out but the prophet Jeremiah prophesied 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” [Jer. 29:11] We may never know why we go through some conditions, but God told us yet again in His Word “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee”. [Isaiah 43:2] Christ, our Redeemer is ever with you and will never leave us alone. The Redeemer came!