Fire insurance or a true relationship? That’s what we will discuss today.
1 My child, be attentive to my wisdom [seeing from God’s perspective]; incline your ear to my understanding [paying attention to God’s ways], 2 that you may keep discretion [live holy and righteous lives], and your lips may guard knowledge [speak godly and true statements].
When Zechariah got his voice back (Luke 1:64), he began to praise God and prophesy much like Mary. After speaking about redemption and salvation (v68-69), about deliverance and mercy (v70-72), about the holy covenant and the oath to Father Abraham (v.73), Zechariah says this:
74 To grant us that we, being rescued from the hand of our enemies,
Would serve Him without fear,
75 In holiness and righteousness before Him all our days.
76 And you, child, also will be called the prophet of the Most High;
For you will go on before the Lord to prepare His ways;
77 To give His people the knowledge of salvation
By the forgiveness of their sins,
78 Because of the tender mercy of our God,
With which the Sunrise from on high will visit us,
79 To shine on those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death,
To guide our feet into the way of peace.”
- v.74 With fear is how they always served God–up until John. John prepared the way for Yeshua (Jesus); Yeshua (Jesus) showed the way to His loving Father.
- v.75 Christ will make us holy and righteous.
- v.76-77 John will go ahead of the Messiah and prepare the way; he will begin the knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of sins.
- v.78 God now begins to be portrayed as a loving Father who has tender mercy for His children–all of them (Gentiles, too).
- v.79 The light of Christ will shine in our hearts. He will shine on every heart and say, “Do you trust Me? Then, follow Me.” We spend our entire lives learning to trust and follow.
So, how are you doing? Do you want to follow Christ and meet with Him up close and personal? Or, are you comfortable at a distance? A lot of people have their “get out of jail free” cards and they’re fine keeping Christ at arm’s length. But, that’s not what salvation is all about. If we take heaven and hell off the table and just deal with a personal, one-on-one relationship with Jesus for life, would everyone who claims to be a Christian really take Him up on it? Of course, if we have a relationship with Jesus, then hell is averted and heaven is secured. Christ in us IS heaven!
Let’s follow Christ because He has called us. Let’s be obedient because His Spirit urges us to do so. Let’s converse with Him constantly and consistently all day, every day. We don’t have to worry about hell because Christ is in us, nor do we need to worry about heaven because He has promised to take us to be with Him (John 17:24). But, we must not miss the point of the cross/grave/resurrection/ascension, which is “Christ in us, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27).
Abba, thank You for living in me. The lack of Your presence would surely be hell. May our relationship grow closer and closer together until You and I are completely one–now, THAT’S heaven! I love You. Thank You for loving me. Amen.