“Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the LORD Almighty. But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears?
Endure His Coming
Nine-year-old Emma was pleased with herself. She was the first in her class to finish the assignment, and now the teacher was walking around the room checking everyone’s work. Just one more row of desks and the teacher would look down on Emma’s paper with a smile and hand her a big sticker. But wait! Emma suddenly realized she had missed an important part of the instructions. No wonder she finished before everyone else! With the teacher now only two desks away, Emma had a terrible sinking feeling in her stomach.
God’s people had been waiting and praying for the Lord to send the promised Messiah for hundreds of years. They longed for his arrival and were confident that his coming would bring many blessings. Then God sent the prophet Malachi with this message: “Yes, the one you are hoping for is coming soon. But are you ready?” The prophet pointed out many ways in which God’s people and their leaders had been disobedient. And it wasn’t just that they had heard God’s instructions wrong—they had willfully chosen to follow their own sinful desires. They were not as ready as they thought for the coming of God’s holy Son.
Does the Christmas season bring a knot to your stomach? Perhaps you become stressed at the thought of all the work that needs to be done before the holidays. Maybe you are anxious about upcoming family gatherings for any number of reasons. But what about the fact that the holy God himself has come to earth and will return one day in judgment! This fact need not fill you with terror. Although we have been just as disobedient as those before us, Jesus Christ, the righteous Son of God, came to make us right before God. He calls us to repent and believe the good news that in him, all our sins have been forgiven. We can stand before God’s throne confident that our Savior Jesus has come to make us clean.
Lord Jesus, make me ready to welcome you with a humble but joyful heart. Amen.