Fifth Sunday during Lent

7 April 2019

Isaiah 30:18–26, Isaiah 61:10–11, 1 Corinthians 3:5–11, 1 Corinthians 11:23–26

We are the bridge between the past and the future, with one foot in the past and one foot in the future.

The past of glory was gone, a faded memory. Perhaps to some it was just an old tale that was from the crazy aunt. David and Solomon? Sure. Whatever you say, Auntie.

Into hearts that resided in darkness, Isaiah spoke light and life. People who felt oppressed were promised the of planting crops and harvesting them on their own behalf, not under the rule of foreigners. Not only that, Isaiah told them that they would turn their backs on their treasured idols. They were being told that the little gods that had protected them would be thrown away. That’s crazy!

Isaiah later talks about the earth and garden producing as they should, because God has provided and blessed them. Not their idols. The promise of God’s blossoming righteousness in the hearts of people who had abandoned their God who had them to bear his .

to life. During this series of devotions, we haven’t spoken much on , but with this last devotion for the series it seems appropriate. Lent comes from Old English and German, meaning spring. Spring comes at the of Winter (the land almost “dead”, but waiting to come alive). Just like the Jews, who were in their “Winter”, so are we before our salvation.

and Apollos worked on ground that wasn’t yet “alive”. Yet, they planted the faith and watered it. Eventually, new growth in dead ground came alive and blossomed. While others were fighting over who they followed (Paul, Apollos, or others), these coworkers in Christ looked ahead to see a crop that God empowered them to see, even if they did not see it now.

Our bridge from death to life and from past to future is the legacy of our faith. Paul proclaims it best, “…as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.” The past and future. While we remember and the past, we must look to the future of ourselves, our family, our church, our faith, and the world.

1) What do you think the future of this church should look like? What can you do to help that vision come to pass?

2) Often, we are blinded to our vision of the future, and thus tear down the future visions of others. What can you and we do to embrace the visions of others for the future?

3) Paul’s concluding statement covers both past and future. How can Paul’s conclusion empower and educate your vision and how to make it come to pass?