Thursday, 27 December 2018

Death foretold

Along with the joy of the season, we also need to accept the fallen nature of this world. It would be wonderful if we didn't have to worry and feel sorrow but this is what we're stuck with.

It's sad but true that Christ's birth resulted in the death of children. This was foretold in Jeremiah 31:15 (KJV) which reads, "Thus saith the LORD; A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation, and bitter weeping; Rachel weeping for her children refused to be comforted for her children, because they were not."

Matthew 2:16 (BBE) records how this slaughter happened. "Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, was very angry; and he sent out, and put to death all the male children in Bethlehem and in all the parts round about it, from two years old and under, acting on the knowledge which he had got with care from the wise men."

The death of Jesus was also foretold. In Luke 2:34-35 (BBE), we read, "And Simeon gave them his blessing and said to Mary, his mother, 'See, this child will be the cause of the downfall and the lifting up of great numbers of people in Israel, and he will be a sign against which hard words will be said; (And a sword will go through your heart;) so that the secret thoughts of men may come to light.'"

Christ's death was also foretold centuries before. Isaiah 53:8 (KJV) says, "He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken."

And in a pictorial way, Christ's substitution for sinful humanity was forecast in Genesis 22:13 (KJV). God told Abraham to sacrifice Isaac but the Lord also provided a substitute in his place. "And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son."

These types and shadows were meant to show the sinfulness of sin and the substitute who would live a sinless life and take our sins to the cross. I'll emphasize this point as well in my next book called You Think You're Going to Heaven? Only by understanding the horrific nature of our sin can we see the need for a saviour.

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