Paul’s speech in Acts 13 reminds us that God is faithful to God’s promises. Paul begins by offering a reminder of God’s work throughout Israel’s history: liberating them from Egypt, leading them through the wilderness, delivering them their promised land, and so on. The list culminates in the greatest act of God’s faithful provision: the arrival of a Savior, Jesus.
Who is this Savior? In citing the words of John the Baptist, Paul offers a piece of the puzzle. Though John is revered as a great man and prophet, Jesus is the one whose sandals John is not even worthy to untie. This Savior Jesus is worthy of our highest praise and worship. We will find our lives when we bow before him in adoration.
As John the Baptist says, Jesus is indeed worthy of our adoration, but, remarkably, Jesus does not use his power and majesty to remove himself from us and stay in lofty places. Rather, Jesus humbles himself to an extraordinary degree. Remember, in this season of Advent, we await the birth of a baby. The one whose sandals we are not worthy to untie is the same one who becomes a human baby, endures the difficulties of life, and humbles himself to the point of death on a cross. No wonder we wait with such great expectation for December 25! Who else loves us and uses power in this way?
Lord, help us see You rightly. Help us revere You as we ought. You are worthy of our highest praise. But help us also see Your humility. You love each of us deeply. You draw near to us in our struggles, able to sympathize with our human challenges. Let us rejoice in Your great love and faithfulness. Amen
Blake Thomsen, Duke Divinity ’20 and PCM+ intern