In more than three decades of my Christian life, I have been blest by 2 types of Daily devos'
(matter not exceeding 500 words) in universal Christian literature. Not only those Devos'
which have a different theme everyday but also the ones which revolve around a certain
theme over a period of time, say a fortnight, have richly edified me. In fact, both
styles have their own inherent advantages. If the former style caters to the varying
spiritual needs of a christian from day-to-day, the latter aims 'to ground'
a child of God in a certain subject in order he derives the full benefits of the
deep insightful study of a certain topic, spread over a fixed span of time.
In my Daily devo page, I have consciously tried to go in for 'a blend of both the
styles' whereby within a constant theme, I would be aiming to focus on different
facets of it which admittedly is a closer imitation of the 'Constant theme' style
than the 'Varying topics' one.
Having dwelt on the topic of Christian journey and the “Conquest of Canaan”
in the previous months, now in the month of March, considering that
we are in the season of Lent, I intend to focus on the subject- “Lent season”.
Once again, let me wish you a happy and an edifying read…
Why 40 days?
“At once the Spirit sent him out into the desert, and he was in the desert forty days,…” -
While most of us would be aware as to why Lenten season is spread over 40 days, for the uninitiated,
it would be worth recalling that Jesus’ ordeal in the desert lasted 40 days, hence the Church
leaders at the time of deciding its duration decided to fix a time of 40 days for Christians
to spend in penance and soul-searching. Even at the cost of sounding repetitive, I would like
to reiterate that for the Lenten season to achieve its purpose, we have to be sincere in our
motives and actions, otherwise it would denigrate to a mere seasonal affair with God.
Ever wondered, why Jesus spent 40 days (it could have been 39 or 41 days also) in the
wilderness before launching His ministry? For arriving at an answer, we need to focus
on the mission of Jesus. If Moses was used by God to usher in the era of the Torah
(the Law including the Ten commandments), then Jesus was used by Him, to usher in a far
superior era of the Gospel (age of Grace)-
II Cor 3:6-11. Applying the same analogy, if
we were to proceed, we would observe that Moses spent 40 days and 40 nights in the Sinai
Mountain, receiving the Law. Now could the time spent by Jesus in the Judean wilderness
(equivalent of Mount Sinai) be anything different, before He introduced the Gospel (God’s new Law)
to his generation
(Matt 5-7)? Just as the people marveled at the radiance in Moses’ countenance,
when he approached them with the tablets containing the commandments, people of Jesus generation
were stunned by the power and authority in His words
(Matt 7:28,29) as he introduced Gospel
(God’s new dispensation) to them, raising the moral bar by several notches, as it were,
in relation to the Torah
(Matt 5:21-28). Here the similarities end, for the power in Jesus’
words would never diminish
(Matt 24:35) unlike the radiance in Moses’ countenance
(II Cor 3:7),
which gradually faded out!
Father, we have the example of your own son before us to encourage us in our “wilderness experience”.
Just as it accomplished a purpose in your son’s life, we believe our wilderness experiences also would
accomplish their desired purposes. We surrender ourselves once again, into thy hands. In Jesus’ name. Amen.