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Voice of the Lord
Devotional: 23rd of Av
Eli! Eli! L'mah sh'vaktani? (My God! My God! Why have you deserted me?) (Matthew 27:46)
Have you ever felt deserted by God? Is any feeling worse than that? Yeshua had enjoyed unbroken fellowship with God from before the beginning of eternity. His own words on the matter reflect the greatest intimacy: "My Father has handed over everything to me. Indeed no one fully knows the Son except the Father, and no one fully knows the Father except the Son" (Matthew 11:27). How painful, then, was his cry, "Eli! Eli! L'mah sh'vaktani?"
What can be more of a nightmare than staring into the abyss of our Father's abandonment? Yet we must be willing to walk even into the darkest places if we are to emerge in the light of resurrection. That is where God's love shines.
Yeshua has faced down the horror of sin. The prophet Yesha'yahu (Isaiah) wrote that God was pleased to crush him (Isaiah 53:10) because his stripes healed us (Isaiah 53:5). Yeshua paid the price to redeem us. We enjoy everlasting fellowship with our Father because Yeshua faced the abandonment we deserved.
The second blessing of the Amidah (Standing Prayer) states, "You are eternally Mighty, O God, You bring the dead back to life...." Techiyat HaMeytim (the resurrection of the dead) makes permanent the meaning of life. In Yeshua, we can enjoy the fruits of fellowship with God forever.
...draw close to God and taste the fruits of everlasting fellowship.
The Voice of the Lord, Copyright © 1998 by the Lewis and Harriet Lederer Foundation, Inc. Published by Messianic Jewish Publishers, Distributed by Messianic Jewish Resources, www.messianicjewish.net. All rights reserved. Used by permission. No part of this article may be reproduced in print or on the web, or transmitted in any form, without the written permission of the publisher.
the Week of Proper 13 / Ordinary 18