PREPARE THE WAY OF THE LORD
Anita Clark – Pastor, Carbondale, Kansas
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make His paths straight.” Mark 1:3.
This verse is repeated here by Mark from Isaiah 40:3 - “The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness. Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert the highway for our God. John did exactly as he was prophesied to do. He prepared the way for Christ to be recognized as the Messiah to Israel. Also, in Malachi 3:1, a prophecy of John the Baptist, whose ministry began before Christ Jesus was revealed. Think of this word “Prepare.” It means in the Hebrew Old Testament, “providing, to make ready, planning, and supplying.” His whole ministry was to promote Jesus to be recognized as the Messiah. He suffered a martyr’s death because he obeyed God completely.
We think of Jesus Christ who said, “I go to prepare a place for you” - John 14:1-3. Jesus did not mean that he was going to do a lot of carpentry work so we could have a mansion over there in heaven. I believe that He was referring to the work He would do through His death on the cross that would supply all who believe a place with Him in heaven. He went willingly to the worst death contrived by man - one that caused tremendous suffering to those who died in that manner. Through His death all provision was made for us who believe to have an eternal dwelling in heaven with him. Everything we will ever need has been “ prepared” for us by the death of Christ. Every victory over every trial - He already fought that battle and won for us. Lay hold of that provision by faith.
You may say, “I don’t have enough faith to lay hold of that.” Read Romans 10:17, “So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.” If you are not regularly hearing God’s Word, you will lack faith in tests and trials of life.
The Word of God says, “Not forsaking of the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one another, and so much the more, as we see the day approaching” (Hebrews 10:25). Right now we are not able to meet together, and oh, how much we miss it! We help one another, giving support by our obeying the Word and meeting together.
Everything we need for our Christian life is already “prepared” for us. Philippians 4:19 says, “But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” The word “supply” in the original Greek means “to make replete (filled or well supplied), to cram, to satisfy, to finish (a period or task) or perfect.” This great supply that Jesus’ death has provided for us brings us victory everyday, through every trial and test.
How can we prepare the way of the Christ, Who is coming very soon? First, We need to be sure we are prepared. Amos 4:12 says, “Prepare to meet thy God.” Israel was told, “Prepare yourselves.” (II Chron. 35:4). John the Baptist went before the Lord declaring repentance, and preparing others to believe in Jesus as their Messiah. Are we ready to see the Lord when He comes?
Signs of the soon coming of Christ are everywhere. The Bible declares that there will be seven years of tribulation, which shall come upon all the earth to try them that dwell upon the earth. The Scripture teaches that to those who look for Christ Jesus, He will come and take them away to be with Him before the tribulation starts. How can we “prepare” to meet our God? How can we be ready to answer that trumpet sound as we read in I Thessalonians 4:13-18? Here is alist of things God can work in us if we let Him:
1. First yield ourselves to God, putting Him first.
2. Make sure our family is giving Jesus first place in their lives.
3. Be a good example to them, showing the love of Jesus and His compassion.
4. Telling others that Christ is coming soon.
5. Loving Jesus vehemently - meaning passionately, ardently, intensely, and earnestly.
Jesus wants first place in our lives. We need to be prepared for that special place He has prepared for us. Revelation 21:3 speaks of the Bride of Christ “prepared for her husband.”
HOW DO WE PREPARE THE WAY OF THE LORD? Yield to God ourselves. Pray for Him to come soon. Walk with God as a true believer before the world. Believe and live to show we are not of the world, but of the new world to come. Long for and pray for His soon return. Witness to those around us to receive Christ and be ready. HE’S COMING VERY SOON.