"The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:14

Tuesday, June 24, 2014


Waiting is no fun. Recently I heard a character on Downton Abbey say, "There is no worse feeling than waiting for something to happen." As a young man in the 70's I used to hum along with a song about anticipation..."it's breaking my mind...keeping me waiting..."

For centuries, the Jewish people had waited for their Messiah to come and restore the fortunes of Israel, liberating them from oppressors, and extending his rule over Gentile (non-Jewish) nations. Generations came and departed and still they waited. Then came the announcement of the angel at the birth of Jesus, "I bring you good tidings of great joy! Unto you is born this day in the city of David, a savior, who is Christ the Lord!"

The name we use today, Christ, is actually a transliteration of the title Messiah. That just means that the English translators chose to spell out the word in Greek (christos) rather than giving its original meaning. So "Jesus Messiah" is really a more accurate way of saying "Jesus Christ." Jesus responded to the question put to him by the high priest, "Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed?" by saying, "It is as you say." He was acknowledging, for the record, his identity as Messiah.

As a member of the family of David, Jesus was proclaimed as Messiah both before his birth and after his resurrection. Jesus himself was slow to make messianic claims because of the ideas about the Messiah in the minds of the Jewish people. Those ideas were very different from the character and purpose of his ministry and so, he did not want to encourage the wrong ideas.

When Peter confessed Jesus to be the Messiah, Jesus told him and the others to tell no one that he was the Christ. It was a matter of timing because he had first to suffer and die. After his death and resurrection, what he had done changed the old concept of messiahship. He was proclaimed as Messiah, God's Anointed King, resurrected in glory to occupy the throne of the universe.

What are you waiting for? Do you wait for a time when everything will come together harmoniously so that you can live happily ever after? Are you waiting for the world to change to match your expectations? Are you waiting for that special someone to complete you and make you whole? Is it possible that, like Israel at the time of Jesus, we misunderstand the meaning of what he has provided for us?

Jesus has done what was needed to grant you peace and joy right now, in the midst of apparent chaos, confusion, and loneliness. He waits patiently for you to turn to him to find all you  need, and more.  He is the Messiah who longs to reign in you.

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