History is made through turning points. These are the seasons and momentous occasions in which a shift happens, whether political, technological or ecological.
For example, the earliest biblical texts were written around the time the hebrew alphabet was designed (1300 BC – 1200 BC), and in a culture in which stories were usually passed down orally.
In the time of the Reformation, printing was discovered – so the Bible could be printed and widely distributed in common languages. This was another key time, a massive move forward for the gospel.
Now we are in a digital age. Just as with any technology it can be an avenue for corruption, but the gospel can be communicated powerfully through digital technology. The Western world is going through a major time of change and many more will discover the life changing power of the good news.
The New Testament starts with a voice of change:
[John] went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet,
“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
make his paths straight.
Every valley shall be filled,
and every mountain and hill shall be made low,
and the crooked shall become straight,
and the rough places shall become level ways,
and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’”
John the Baptist was the last prophet of the old covenant and his prophesying prepared the way for Jesus. Some of us may be waiting for a clear prophetic word, wondering where it is going to come from. Be ready to hear it.
John’s call is relevant to everyone standing on the brink of change. He calls us to prepare the way for the Lord:
And a third we can perhaps add from a look at the history of the Church: prayer and spiritual warfare. The 16th century scholar and Presbyterian minister Matthew Henry said “whenever God is about to do something truly great, He first sets His people a praying!”
As we face our own personal and shared turning points, let us prepare the way for God’s new thing- in our hearts, in our relationships and in our prayers.