We wrapped up our series “Unseen” yesterday at Cross Point by talking about the amazing parallel between Jesus’s time in the wilderness compared to the Israelites’ time in the wilderness.
Jesus is driven into the wilderness for 40 days after God’s statement of love and affirmation (his baptism). The Israelites wandered in the wilderness for 40 years after being set free, a statement of God’s love and affirmation.
Now, if you know the story, you may remember that the Hebrew people had trouble trusting God when they were in the wilderness. God continually told them…
You are chosen, You are loved, You are set free.
But it would only take a few days in between each sign/miracle before the people started focusing on the wilderness surrounding them more than on God’s love and deliverance. So they decided they wanted to go back. They’d rather be a slave to Pharaoh than to have to live in the unpredictable wilderness where they had to trust God on a daily basis.
Now, like the Israelites, Jesus is driven into the wilderness. What Jesus does is astounding because he transforms this wilderness experience.
How does He do this?
His secret is that He goes in completely confident of who He is. He is God’s beloved son: chosen, called, and loved.
And he did what the Israelites could not do. He passed the wilderness test. He walked away from so many of the temptations that snare you and I almost every day.
All of this tells me that my most important weapon in the wilderness is the knowledge that: You are loved beyond your wildest imagination by a God who never changes.
In the wilderness we’re tempted to think that God has abandoned us, but that’s simply not true. The wilderness is a time to be reminded that even though life is not turning out the way we want it to, God is still faithful and we are still loved.
Why do you think we have such a difficult time remembering our identity in Christ as loved, chosen and called?