Reflections: March 5, 2021
Friday of the Second Week of Lent
By Aaron T. Fenker
"They were seeking from Him a sign from heaven, tempting Him." (Mark 8:11)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Jesus isn't a showman. He doesn't parade Himself around doing parlor tricks, miracles on a whim, just to get people to believe in Him. When we get power, wealth, strength, we tend to flaunt it, brag about it, show it off. We'll all flex, given the opportunity. Jesus doesn't flex. He doesn't need to.
But that's the temptation swirling around Jesus. "You don't need to be this or that Jesus. You don't need to be Savior Jesus." The devil tempts Him, "All these kingdoms I will give you if you will bow down to me" (Matthew 3). Peter tempted Him, "Being crucified shall never happen to You, Lord" (Matthew 16). They were doing it here, and they'd do it again. "Tell us, Christ, who struck you" (Matthew 26). "Come down from the cross, and we'll believe in You" (Matthew 27).
Jesus "didn't count equality with God as something to be stolen, but He made Himself nothing, taking on the form of a servant, becoming obedient unto death, even death on a cross" (Philippians 2). And that's the only sign Jesus actually does. He dies. "The sign of Jonah--for as Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days, so the Son of Man will be in the heart of the earth three days and nights." He does this for you. To save you. He goes to His Cross, stays on His Cross, but does not stay dead in His tomb. And you are saved.
Thanks be to God Jesus isn't like us! He doesn't do anything for recognition, He does all that He does simply to save you. No signs, no wonders. He dies and rises for you. You are saved. Need a sign for that? Look no further than the Lord's own signs--His Word and Gifts: Baptism, Absolution, the Gospel, the Supper of His Body and Blood. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
No blinding sign we ask, No wonder from above. Lord, help us place our trust alone In your unswerving love. ("O Christ, You Walked the Road" LSB 424, st.3)
-Rev. Aaron T. Fenker is the pastor of Bethlehem and Immanuel Lutheran churches in Bremen, KS.
He is also the dean of theology for Higher Things.
He is also the dean of theology for Higher Things.
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