Previously we learned about our Beloved Identity which is through David’s line. The last two
weeks we learned about our mission which is Culture Like Christ. This week Pastor Josiah
explained about Carrying Promise Together.
From Luke 1 we were introduced to Zechariah who was a Levite that served God in the Temple. He was chosen by lot to burn the incense. The well-seasoned Zechariah encountered an angel of the LORD in the sanctuary, and Zechariah was frightened.
“But the angel said,’Don’t be afraid, Zechariah! God has heard
your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give you a son, and you
are to name him John.”
“Zechariah asked the angel, ’How can I be sure of this? I am an
old man and my wife is well along in year.’
The angel said to him,’I’m Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God,
and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news.’”
Luke 1:13,18-19 (NIV)
Because of Zechariah’s doubt, he was made mute until his son John was born. When his
Temple service was over and he returned home, he could not tell Elizabeth the good news.
However, Elizabeth got pregnant though she was also “well-seasoned.” Elizabeth was elated
that she was not barren anymore.
God invited Elizabeth and Zechariah into the scene. The LORD also invites us into the scene.
We are co-heirs with Christ, and we are to co-reign with Him. Jesus is not just showing us the
culture like Christ; He wants us to participate in it. We have the authority to be light in this dark world, and we have a role to play in the process.
May we be sensitive to those God moments, and may we know what to do with them. “A God moment is a no nonsense moment.” Pastor Josiah stated,” I am in a moment. My family is in a moment. This church is in a moment.” May we take these times seriously, sensitively, and actively.
The next significant point in Luke 1 deals with Elizabeth and Mary. For Gabriel the angel came to marry in Elizabeth’s sixth month of pregnancy and told Mary, a virgin, that she was favored.
“‘Don’t be afraid, Mary,’ the angel told her, ’for you have found
favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and
you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called
the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne
of his ancestor David.’” Luke 1:30-32 (NLT)
On so many levels, Mary was confused, and the challenges that she would experience would be many. She was young, a virgin, and betrothed to Joseph, a descendent of David. How would others respond to the news that Mary was pregnant? How would Joseph feel about Mary carrying a baby that was not his? How would Mary deal with all these obstacles?
“Just because something looks unfavorable doesn’t mean it is.” God may be preparing you
in your faith walk. He might be trying “to pull faith out of you.” However, in our microwave
culture, we are not very patient nor experienced in this testing ground of faith. Wisely the LORD does not give power tools to infants. Balanced with that point is the fact that God has good gifts for you with Jesus interceding for you at the right hand of the heavenly Father and the Holy Spirit interceding for you in your hearts. He wants to bless you, but some things look unfavorable on the ground level.
Mary asked Gabriel how it could be that she would get pregnant when she was a virgin. Gabriel explained that the “Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will over shadow you.” Luke 1:35 (NLT) Mary was inquiring. Further Gabriel told her about
Elizabeth’s pregnancy. “For nothing is impossible with God.” Luke 1:37 As a good Papa, God
wants to bless us. He wants to have us succeed. “He’s more than able to supply everything
you need to fulfill the assignment.”
It is fine to ask the LORD to help you understand a situation, task, or idea. It is okay to ask the LORD to help you to succeed in the assignment He has for you. Know that He is Jehovah Jireh the LORD who provides. He sees you because He is El Roi the God who sees. Just like the song says,”Trust and obey, for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.” Mary in full faith responded that she was the LORD’s servant. What faith and trust she had.
A few days later Mary left to visit Elizabeth and Zechariah. At Mary’s greeting,”Elizabeth’s
child leaped within her, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.” Luke 1:41 (NLT) Two
points are powerful with this section. One is that Elizabeth and Mary were walking together in their situations. Both were carrying promise. For us we are meant to carry the loads together because we are in community. When one part of the body hurts, other parts are affected. Second is that the presence of the LORD was there. Elizabeth’s baby leaped with joy. That was the tangible presence of God. Being yielded to God is the only answer. “There’s a blessing that comes upon those who believe God will follow through with what He said.” The power of faith is evident here. Can we believe like Mary did? She did not carry promise alone.
The Paramount Point is “Promises of God are often intertwined.” Pastor Josiah said,”My yes
can affect her. Her yes can affect another.” The LORD sent Mary to family who would bless her. Elizabeth and Mary were carrying promises together. God is connecting the promise carriers- together. May we be salt and light in this troubled and desperate world.