Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Nov. 21 – The Messianic banquet

Guest blogger, Stan Nussbaum, takes us on a journey through the messianic year calendar.

Welcome to the journey of our Messiah through the year with Dr. Nussbaum.

"I tell you, many will come from the east and west to share the banquet with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven." Matthew 8:11 (NLT)

One of the best things about the Season of Suffering is that all our suffering is so temporary. Today at last we enter the season where everything is permanent, the Season of Glory. The season is a crescendo of hope, love, joy, and peace leading up through Christmas to climax on New Year’s Eve with the celebration of the Messiah’s return.

What better way to launch the Season of Glory than with a huge Thanksgiving feast on November 25th! The Messiah, his Father, and his Spirit have carried us through the Season of Suffering and at this point in the Messianic Year we stare glory in the face.

Eat, drink, and be joyful, for tomorrow the Messiah is coming back! At the appointed time he will destroy all evil and strip all his enemies of their power. Forgiven, restored people of every nation, tribe, and language will sit down together to enjoy a feast with the Messiah himself at the head table. Fabulous! Glory, glory, hallelujah!

If we are celebrating the future on Thanksgiving Day, we could call it a feast of faith, but is any great faith required? The Messiah’s track record is perfect from creation through history up till now. Surely he will also bring the seventh and final blessing.
“He will not falter or be discouraged till he establishes justice on earth. In his law the islands will put their hope.” (Isaiah 42:4)
It’s as good as done, so certain that we get to give thanks for it in advance.

We may not be thankful about all our present circumstances but who cares? The Messiah never promised to change our circumstances or bring us instant success, wealth, or comfort. That is why there is a “Season of Suffering” in the Messianic Year but no “Season of Wealth,” and the “Season of Glory” is mostly about the future.

Even though the Messiah’s glory party has not started yet, our banquet reservations have been made, our tickets have arrived and we are supposed to be gearing up for it. The Messiah is already bringing heaven into our inner lives because we have welcomed him and he reigns within us. In fact, we are already getting samples of the banquet food, foretastes of what it will be like. We are injected with his glory by the presence of the Holy Spirit.

No wonder we are a little bubbly sometimes. That hidden inner glory bubbles to the surface of our lives as hope, love, joy, and peace (themes of the next four weeks). We couldn’t keep it in if we wanted to.

Since we are so sure about what is coming but we live in a world that is not, we have some work to do. We don’t just live in the foreshadow of the Messiah’s party; we are the foreshadow. A profound but little known verse nails this point beautifully, “The testimony about Jesus is the spirit of prophecy,” or as the NLT puts it, “For the essence of prophecy is to give a clear witness for Jesus.” (Revelation 19:10)

The world around us can see what is, but we can see what is coming. It is already within us. Our glory injection changes our lives and gives the world a sneak peek at the way the whole world will look when Jesus the Messiah returns to reign everywhere. We are prophecy in action, the future in the present, witnesses and exhibits of what happens when he takes over. We testify that he is the Messiah, the arriving King, the transforming King, the hope of the world.

This will be a party too good to miss. Let’s thankfully predict it. Pass the turkey, please.

Welcome: “Yes, come Lord Jesus. The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come!’”

Affirmation: There is a place at the Messianic banquet table with my name on it, and I can’t wait!



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