As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet: “A Voice of one calling in the wilderness, Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.” Luke 3:4
Preparations are always made for important people’s arrival. They want everyone to be aware that someone of high importance is coming. There is also the desire that everyone give the proper honor to the one arriving.
For each important person, what needs to be done in preparation is different for each one. Some require much more, while others will require less. It is dependent upon the level of importance for each.
Talking of John the Baptist, Luke quotes from Isaiah about one calling out in the wilderness the need to make a way for the Lord’s arrival. This quote comes from Isaiah 40:3-5.
Even though John the Baptist was talking about the first arrival of Jesus, the call can, and needs to be, still be made. Jesus can still be making the first appearance into the lives of people all over the world.
The majority of the world has still yet to have heard about Jesus. Out of those who have heard, most have not accepted or made a way for Him. Most of the world is still rejecting Jesus.
There is also those in the church who have accepted Christ, but have not really made straight paths for Him. They have chosen to accept Christ, but not really live their lives for Him, staying in a sinful lifestyle.
Every person needs to make a straight path for Jesus. They must open their hearts and lives up to His reign and control. The challenge is not everyone knows this.
Every believer must be willing to be the voice calling in the wilderness of the world. They must be willing to point people to Jesus and encourage people to make a straight path for Him in their lives.
Starting with your own life, you must make a path for God in your life. Allow God to reign as absolute authority over all you say, think or do.
Once you have begun to do that, then you must be a voice calling in the wilderness. Give others a chance to know Jesus by being His witness in this dark world. Do not keep the information to yourself, but call it out for others to hear and respond.
Are you a voice calling in the wilderness?
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will give Jesus complete authority in your life; that you will be a witness of Jesus to others; and that you will be a voice calling in the wilderness of this world.
“I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the Lord Almighty. Malachi 3:1
It is common for royalty or some famous person to send a messenger ahead of them to prepare the way. Security, location, set up, advertisement, food, sound, and more things must be made ready for their arrival.
The more important or famous the person, the more work in preparation is required. Each one requires different things to be set up for their arrival. The preparation ensures that the presentation will be successful.
God tells Malachi that He will send a messenger ahead of Him to prepare the way. After the messenger prepares the way, God will come, the desired Savior will come.
In this passage, God is talking about John the Baptist preparing the way for the arrival of Jesus. All of this occurred when Jesus had arrived upon the earth nearly two thousand years ago. Several years later, Jesus left the earth, but it planning to return someday.
God still sends messengers ahead of Him. There will come a day when Jesus will return again to take all who believe in Him to be with Him and the Father for eternity in heaven. The messengers for today must also prepare for His return.
This time the preparation is to be a witness of Jesus and to draw as many as possible into believing in and following Jesus. God wants everyone to be saved and none to perish. When Jesus returns this time, it will be for the last time and for the final judgement on every person as to whether they serve Him or not.
As a believer, you are the new messenger preparing the way for the return of Jesus. You should have the same heart as that of God, that no one should perish. Do not keep the message to yourself, but be willing to share it. Prepare the way for His return in your own life and in the lives of others.
The real preparation is now making disciples of all men. Learn to live for and obey God, and teach others the same as you wait for His return. Do not ignore your job to be His messenger today, but be the greatest messenger you can be.
Today I pray that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will prepare your life for His return; that you will be God’s messenger; and that you will make disciples of Jesus.
Pass through, pass through the gates! Prepare the way for the people. Build up, build up the highway! Remove the stones. Raise a banner for the nations. Isaiah 62:10
Raising a banner is a sign of victory. The one who raises the banner is the one who has conquered and is in control.
Over the centuries of time nations have raised banners against other nations to gain control. Even in modern times, groups will raise banners of victory or to gain control. Many different groups and organizations have made their own banners to let the rest of the world know who they are. They are not ashamed of who they are and want the world to know it.
In this passage, Isaiah is giving a prophecy about the city of Jerusalem. The people are to go through the gates and build up the highway to the city. They are to raise a banner to the world, letting the world know Jerusalem will stand strong.
Although this passage is about Jerusalem, believers can also raise a banner. The banner that they are raising is one of Jesus. It is a sign showing who Jesus is and the victory over sin and death that He has brought about.
The goal of Jesus when He walked on the earth was to reach the lost. As He left, He passed that goal on to His disciples,. who passed it on down through the generations of all believers.
Nations and people are dying in sin because they do not know about Jesus and the salvation He provides. The path to God has been laid out by Jesus. The believers must show the world that path. Believers can walk into the enemies territory and raise His banner up in victory, taking back lost souls to God.
Every where that you go, there will be some who do not know Jesus. Most often the places that you will go will be in the enemies territory–this dark and dying world. You have a banner to raise up. You have the information that the world needs to know.
The banner you raise up is Jesus. The world needs to know Jesus and the salvation He provides. Doing this can take back nations and the territories that Satan has taken. Jesus has already provided the victory over sin and death.
Now it is your turn to raise up the banner and claim that victory!
I pray today that you will know the salvation Jesus provides; that you will let the world know about Jesus; that you will walk in the victory Jesus has given; and that you will raise the banner of Jesus for the world to see.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Psalm 23:8
Very few people really want to be near an enemy. A person attempts to go the other direction when he sees the enemy. Seeing the enemy usually means there is trouble about to happen, or it could happen.
It can also mean that there is danger nearby. No one wants to be in a dangerous situation.
The few that want to be near the enemy are usually there with the plan to destroy the enemy. Those few are doing it out of zeal for whatever they are against.
David talks about how God makes a table for him in the presence of his enemies and in that same process he is anointed and overflowing with life.
There are a couple of things about this table and where it is located. Most people will not eat, unless there is peace and calmness. They will not sit down to eat around the enemy, because there is danger. However, with God making the table and food, there is peace. God is in control. The enemy can do nothing without God’s permission.
Along with this, believers need to be among the ‘enemy’, the world, in order to be a witness of who Jesus is. Sitting down in peace while in a battle, shows that they know something the enemy does not know–God will win the battle. Believers are anointed by God’s Holy Spirit to win.
The believer also needs to be among the enemy in order to be a witness. Many believers run from the enemy or refuse to be among them. How can they be an influence? How can the world hear about Jesus, unless someone goes to them?
You most likely have some people in your life who are the enemy. They make life difficult for you. As like most people, you probably try to avoid being around them.
Instead of avoiding them, allow God to prepare a table among them. Use those times to be His witness, to show His love to them. God has anointed you by His Holy Spirit to be His witness to the world.
Do not fear the enemy and run away, but stand in God’s strength and power. He placed you there for a reason.
You are on the winning side. The enemy cannot win. Are you His witness in the enemy’s territory today?
I pray today that God will anoint you with His Holy Spirit; that God will show you opportunities to be His witness; that God will remove fear of the enemy; and that the world will see Jesus in you.