Third Sunday of Advent
John the Baptist called the Jewish people who came to him to a life of genuine change. The people at the time weren’t living up to their calling to be a holy people. They weren’t living a generous life, being honest in their practices, and using their power for good. Instead, they used their power to prey on the weak. This was not what God intended for them when he called them to bless the nations of the world.
John warned them that when the Lord comes to judge the world, they won’t be able to call on their heritage as “children of Abraham” to save them (Luke 3:8). God seeks people who, like Abraham before them, are willing to turn their lives over to God in faith. God can indeed raise up children like these out of rocks. Bloodline doesn’t matter to the Lord; the Lord can put a title on anyone. What matters to God is our willingness to give him our all and everything. This kind of willingness will show.
This kind of willingness will produce fruit in keeping with repentance. It will be revealed in a changed life and changed actions. It will motivate us to be more like Abraham, who not only spoke his faith but lived it as he took his son Isaac to the altar to be sacrificed (James 2:21). It will lead us to total obedience to God and outright trust and love for God.
Is this the kind of faith you have? This is the kind of faith God asks from each of us—a faith that not only says but does, a faith that puts God above and before all else. May actions follow our words. Let us get serious about our faith and live it out. Let us start demonstrating our love for Jesus.
Garritt Fleming, co-pastor, Schoeneck Moravian Church