04 March 2016

In Mercy He Opens Your Eyes

In Jesus of Nazareth, all the Words and promises of God are fulfilled.

In Him, the new and greater Joshua has come to bring down the walls of Jericho, and great King David’s greater Son establishes the heavenly Jerusalem from which He reigns in mercy.

The ways and the means by which He goes about accomplishing His great work, however, are incomprehensible to sinful man — even to the Twelve, and so also to you, no less, though by His grace you have been called to follow Him as a disciple, and to fear, love, and trust in Him alone.

His Way of Life is incomprehensible to your fallen flesh and bones, to you sinful heart and mind, because it is the Way of the Cross, and you are blinded by your sin to the theology of His Cross.

Oh, you may now, in retrospect, readily acknowledge, confess, and give thanks for the death of Christ Jesus on the Cross.  Praise God!  But you are not so keen about the Cross in your own life.  It’s meaning is hidden from your human wisdom, from your native reason and strength.

Still, it is by the Cross that is laid upon you that the Lord calls you to repentance — to recognize your own poverty, your sin and death — and to call upon Him for mercy, for grace to help in time of need, and for the hope against all hope to see and believe that He has come to save you.

Thus did that poor blind beggar by the side of the road “see” more clearly than the disciples, and by the grace of God he would not let go the promise of the Gospel, the Word concerning Jesus.

Indeed, the same Lord Jesus Christ has mercy for all who call upon Him, who call upon Him in the Spirit and the Truth of His Word.  He has mercy upon you, and forgiveness of all your sins.

He has drawn near to you, not to condemn you for your unbelief, but to save you from yourself, from your sins, from death, and from the devil who would drag you into doubt and despair.  The Word of the Lord Jesus proclaims that He is here to help and heal you through His Holy Gospel.

It is He, not you, who is handed over to suffering and death for your sins, and for the sins of the whole world.  And it is by His Cross, by His atoning sacrifice, by the shedding of His holy and precious Blood, that He accomplishes your salvation.  So it is that His Resurrection on the Third Day becomes your daily resurrection from your ditch on the side of the road, until He shall raise you at the last from the dust and the dirt unto the life everlasting of your body and your soul.

Take it to heart, and trust that His gracious Word of the Gospel is calling you to Him.  And know that, as He does so, in His tender mercy and divine compassion for you, He also takes care of you and provides for your body and all its needs in this life, here and now and through all your days.

Not only that, but all the more so, He opens your eyes in faith, and He makes of you a disciple, so that you follow Him through death into His own divine Life with His God and Father in heaven.

In sickness and in health, in good times and bad, whether you live or whether you die, you are His own, and He is glorified in His mercy upon you.

So is He glorified even now, as He feeds you here at His Altar in this place with His Body and His Blood.  Taste and see that the Lord is good, and that His steadfast love for you endures forever!

In the Name + of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

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