The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion. (vv 1-3a)
God’s salvation for us
Looking back at these verses, who is it that God is saving? I noticed six different groups of people. There are the poor, the brokenhearted, the captives, the prisoners, those who mourn and those who grieve. Jesus isn’t proclaiming good news to those who are rich and have abundance, but to those who are poor and lacking.
God doesn’t bind up those who are happy and doing great, it’s the brokenhearted whom he gently binds up. He doesn’t bring freedom to those who are already free, but to those who are in bondage. And it’s not those who are happy that he comforts, but those who mourn. If we always pretend we are okay, if we always act like we have our lives under control and that we have no troubles, we are cutting ourselves off from the saving power of Christ. While being rich, self sufficient, and happy are what the world tells us will complete us, it is only when we realize our need and our brokenness that we can experience Christ who satisfies our deepest need.
Our role in God’s salvation
These verses also lay out how we are to act on this earth. Compelled by Christ’s love for others we are also meant to proclaim good news to the poor, bind up the brokenhearted, and proclaim freedom for the captives. As we follow Christ we are to comfort those who mourn and provide for those who grieve.
I am going to end this post with a song from Porter’s Gate Worship Project. The lyrics begin, “Christ has no body here but yours, no hands no feet on earth but yours.” The fact that God uses us to carry out his good works, though we sin, is amazing (Ephesians 2:10). The only way we can even begin to do it is through Christ.
As you listen to this song I would invite you to think about the tangible ways God is wanting to use you in the lives of others. Maybe it’s supporting an organization such as International Justice Mission (IJM) that is working to end modern day slavery, being intentional about including someone who is unpopular or unliked, or spending time with those who are grieving a loss.
About the Author
Esther graduated December 2017 with degrees in Music and Accounting from the University of Minnesota. She is currently working as an accounting temp for Robert Half. At First Free she loves volunteering with the nursery and youth group kids. In her free time she might be reading books, playing games, taking road trips, running, playing volleyball, being outside, or hanging out at coffee shops.