It has been said that quite often, we can best see God’s hand at work in our lives only in the rearview mirror. It can be difficult in the midst of living life to understand the way God is at work, using the situations and circumstances through which we’re living to bring about divine purposes. Yet over and again, God has been proven faithful in doing just that. There is power in reading the Old Testament prophecies on this side of their fulfillment in the New Testament. What God has promised, God has brought to pass.
Today’s passages are a clear example of God working beyond our wildest imaginings to bring his purposes to bear. Jeremiah tells us that even while God’s people were in exile, as they faced their darkest days, as hope seemed dim—even then and there God was making promises of a new and better thing to come. Jeremiah tells them a new and better covenant is coming—one written not on tablets of stone but on human hearts. What has been broken and destroyed as a result of human sin will be rebuilt better than ever as a result of God’s faithfulness. Because of God’s rich love for humanity, God will become known to them like never before.
Then as we turn the page to Luke, we begin to see the first signs of the new covenant breaking forth. As Zechariah speaks, he reveals what God is up to. God is fulfilling all the promises he made through the prophets of old. The thing God promised in the darkest of moments in salvation history is dawning. As Zechariah says, God is raising up a horn of salvation just as he promised to do.
As people living in the age of the new covenant, God has been fully revealed and made known to us in the person of Jesus. We have seen the promises God made through the prophets of old made good. So now, even when we face darkness, we can be confident God is at work to bring about a better thing, because God has over and again been faithful to keep every promise that has been made. So we can be sure that in Christ, what is broken will be bound up and what is lost will be found. We can be sure God is faithful, because Jesus is living proof. In Christ, the promised salvation is ours. Thanks be to God.