2010-12-02 / Worship

The New Way of the Gospel (Mark 2:13-17)


When God sent Jesus into the world He ushered in a fresh new relationship for God and man that would eventually become a spiritual marriage between God and man. It begins with God’s love for us, which is expressed through Jesus Christ.

Before Jesus, mankind saw God as a judgmental God whom man, out of fear, sought to please. But God wants more than that. He wants a relationship with mankind. God loves us and He wants us to love Him, not just strive to please Him.

John the Baptist came introducing us anew to God who wants to love us through his Son Jesus. And in so doing John challenged us to prepare for this love relationship by getting rid of sin, which had destroyed this love relationship many years ago in the Garden of Eden.

John the Baptist says repent and be baptized with water, which signifying our cleansing from sin. Then we must believe in God’s love given to us through Jesus Christ. Then Jesus will baptize us with God’s Holy Spirit who will make it possible for us to love God. At that point the new love relationship with God will be created.

It is like a marriage relationship. Jesus is the groom; the believers are the bride; John the Baptist is the best man; God’s Holy Spirit is the One who gives us to the groom. We today are living in the rehearsal stage and moving toward that great day of the spiritual marriage with Jesus Christ.

In the old relationship between man and God, man demonstrated obedience through fasting. But the new relationship calls for feasting at God’s table of love. We need to discard the wine that has soured and turned to vinegar in the old wineskins from man’s neglect and misuse; destroy the old wineskins through repentance of our old sinful lives; and raise the new wineskins that the Holy Spirit of God will create in our lives, ready to be filled with the new wine of God, made from the blood of Jesus.

Prepare for the marriage and the great day of feasting that will come to us when we are with Jesus at the throne of God in Heaven.

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