It is a time of the year to be greatly encouraged. The memorial of Christ’s death and the Days of Unleavened Bread represent something that is of awesome dimensions.
The world is thrashing around in a leaderless confusion, leaving masses of people to lead meaningless lives. The world doesn’t know! It doesn’t understand the purpose for us being on this planet! Few people know why they exist! Most don’t know why they are here or where their lives are supposed to be leading them. They may know what they want and what they don’t want from their leaders, but they don’t even know what good leadership looks like. They just don’t know! “As for My people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people! Those who lead you cause you to err, and destroy the way of your paths” (Isaiah 3:12).
Not only do they not have a positive recognition of the true God, but conditions in the world contribute to anger and a rejection of any notion that there is a loving, caring God. And all the while the world in general is at the mercy of a god – a god who hates everything and anything that comes from, or points to, the fact that there may be one true God. This god creates mass confusion to engender a void in the mind of man which he then fills with his destructive thinking. It is as the Apostle Peter said, “… there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words …” (2 Peter 2:1-3).
Of course, Satan’s destructive devices have as a primary target the Church of God. He takes aim at the very people who God Has called out of this hopeless mess. The people to whom God has revealed Himself. The people with whom He has an intimate and loving Father-child relationship.
Peter identifies those people in this manner: “… elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:2). God, in His abundant mercy, has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead (verses 3 and 4).
Not only has God called us into the knowledge of Him, but through the blood of Jesus Christ we have been washed of the penalty for sin and given God’s Holy Spirit as a dynamic, active, empowering element in our lives. “’Come now and let us reason together’, says the Lord, ‘though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool. If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land’“ (Isaiah 1:18-19).
Mentally and spiritually we currently eat of the “good of the land.” We know that by God’s mighty hand we have been brought out of Egypt and we have met Him at our Mt. Sinai and have made a covenant of life with Him. He leads us through this spiritual, desert wilderness of hopelessness and confusion. We know! We have a living hope.
As we once again submerge ourselves into aspects of Christ’s sacrifice by observing the Passover in memorial, we look beyond Christ’s death to a fantastic future. We know we are not doomed to a man-made destruction, which is the way this world is heading at the moment.
We celebrate the Passover and Days of Unleavened Bread with the full knowledge that we have “an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:4). We also are forcefully aware that our relationship with God keeps us “… by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed at the last time” (verse 5). This gives us great encouragement in a sea of adversity. “In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that in the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (verses 6 and 7).
The Passover provides encouragement for our future beyond the present.
Passover is Thursday evening, 18th. A recorded Passover service is available on the website. It can be accessed at: Main Menu > Services > Passover Service Also, there will be two live streamed services – one for the Western time zone at 7:30 pm. and one for the Eastern time zone at 8:15 pm.
Longtime member and elder, Fred Watson died on Thursday in Seguin, Texas. Fred was 92 years old and had been a pillar in the Church for 47 years. He will be greatly missed.