Wednesday, April 30, 2003

Edifier du Jour-Luke 4:16-21(NASB)
16 And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read. 17 And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book and found the place where it was written, 18 "THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR. HE HAS SENT ME TO PROCLAIM RELEASE TO THE CAPTIVES, AND RECOVERY OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND, TO SET FREE THOSE WHO ARE OPPRESSED, 19 TO PROCLAIM THE FAVORABLE YEAR OF THE LORD." 20 And He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on Him. 21 And He began to say to them, "Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing."
For those of use who are well-off Blogospherians who aren't poor, captive, blind or Help! Help! I'm being oppressed, what does this passage offer other than ammunition for "progressives" to proof-text their cause? Well, check out verse 19, the favorable year of the Lord, a.k.a. the Jubilee. There, all debts were cancelled and property that had been sold returned to its original family. There's a bigger debt involved here; our debt to God for all our sins. In the Mosaic system, only interest was paid, in the form of ongoing animal and grain sacrifices. Jesus had come to pay the principle and set us free from that debt of sin, freeing us from the installment plan. And before we all get too cocky about verse 18, many, if not most, of us are poor in spirit, captive to sin, blind to God's will and oppressed by the corruptions of the world. We might be materially well-off, but we're blue-collar working-stiffs at best in the spiritual realm when compared to the riches that await us.

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