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Thursday of Lent 3

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. — 1 Timothy 2:1–4

In this beautifully comforting passage, the good and gracious will of God is revealed for all the world: God desires all to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. During Lent, what God requires for His will to be accomplished comes into sharp focus. There must be perfection and blood.

God is holy and holiness cannot dwell with imperfection. For us to dwell with Him forever, we must be perfect as He is perfect. Because of the wicked disease of sin, this is impossible for us. So, “when the fullness of time, God sent forth His Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoptions as sons.”

(Galatians 4:4-5) Christ’s perfection and perfect keeping of the Law wasn’t for His benefit, but for ours. Christ’s righteousness and perfection are credited to us through faith. Now holy for Christ’s sake, we have a future waiting

for us in the heavenly kingdom with the Holy Trinity.

The salvation of mankind also requires the shedding of blood. The wrath of God against sin must be poured out. It is for this purpose that Christ is the Lamb of God, pure and holy, who takes away the sin of the world. In His passion and death, Christ drinks the cup of wrath that was ours to drink, and He drinks it dry. Now, the fruit of His sacrifice is given at our altar through His same blood. We have peace with God which surpasses understanding. It is only through the proclamation of this truth and trust in these words that man is saved. This is God’s good and gracious will.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Jesus to take our place under the law and receive the punishment for our sins. Grant that Your Word, which proclaims this Gospel, not be taken from us. Amen.

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