Luke 3:2 While Annas and Caiaphas were high priests,[a] the word of God came to John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. 3 And he went into all the region around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, 4 as it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, saying:
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord;
Make His paths straight.
5 Every valley shall be filled
And every mountain and hill brought low;
The crooked places shall be made straight
And the rough ways smooth;
6 And all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’
The Greek word for “prepare” in the above passage is Hetoimazo: and it means to prepare, provide or make ready! John’s preaching had a strong element of getting people ready for the coming of the Messiah.
My concern as I look at the church today is that our understanding of what “get ready” means is not what it used to be. When the announcer for the fight exclaims: “GET READY TO RUMBLE!”, to the crowd at the fight it means to grab another drink, get popcorn etc. But to the fighters “get ready” means so much more.
To the fighters “get ready” means years of training, lifting weights and cardio. It means drinking strange health drinks and eating a strict diet. So much goes into the battle that is about to take place. The call to get ready is much different for the combatants than it is for the spectators.
When John was calling all of Israel to “get ready”, that call involved baptism, representative of death and resurrection. In other words John’s call was not for the people of Israel to become spectators to the ministry of Jesus, it was calling for an utter reconstruction of who they were, a dying to the old and coming alive to something new.
It applies today. You need to get ready for what God is about to do in your life. Please don’t get ready as a spectator, and don’t be a spectator, get active in this battle that the Lord has already won. Do something different today to prepare for what God has planned for your life.
God I pray you would ready your people for the great move of God you want to bring about in their life and in the world today. Let us know be spectators in the Kingdom but active participants, in Jesus name, ~Amen.
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