Thursday of Septuagesima

Daily Lectionary: Job 12:1-6, 12-25; John 5:30-47

"For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote about Me.  But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe My words?" (John 5:46-47)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. After Jesus heals a sick man on the Sabbath and then proclaims His deity, angry Jews actively pursue Him, that they might kill Him. All in a day's work for Jesus.

In response, Jesus points to all the witnesses testifying about Him: John the Baptist, the works given to Him by the Father to complete, and the Father Himself. But then Jesus zeroes in on the Scriptures. He accuses His pursuers of not truly being interested in hearing or believing what the Scriptures say about Him. "You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life" (John 5:39-40).

These haters of Jesus are people who claim to know Moses so well, and they pride themselves in following every jot and tittle of the Law. And Jesus...well, He doesn't want to do anything more than upset the apple cart!

We are all like those same, angry pursuers. The old Adam in us would rather the Scriptures be nothing more than a collection of moralistic stories or a list of what-to-dos or how-tos. That would make it easier to try to meet the Law's demands and allow us to take some credit for ourselves.

Thanks be to God that Scriptures aren't about us! Rather, their primary purpose is to testify about Christ, FOR US. The Law, the Prophets--every single account--point us to the person and work of Christ and how we receive life and forgiveness of sins through Him.

And Christ reminds us of this through His many gifts that continue to point to Him: Word, water, Body and Blood. The Old Adam in us is threatened by that but our new man rejoices! In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

This is He whom seers in old time Chanted of with one accord, Whom the voices of the prophets Promised in their faithful word. Now He shines, the long expected; Let creation praise its Lord (Of the Father's Love Begotten, LSB 384:3)

This reflection is available as an mp3, click here to download and listen to it.