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Jesus opened the path and blazed the trail for us to meet God.

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Read John 3:13-15

If you’ve climbed to the summit of Mt. Rainer, scaled the volcano on the tiny island of Saba in the Caribbean, descended into the depths of the Grand Canyon or ascended the trail of any Colorado 14er, you’ve experienced the exhilarating feeling of accomplishment. The nation of Israel knew only one who had accomplished such a feat. The patriarch Moses ascended up Mt. Sinai and came back down. We, like Moses, can go up as many mountains as desired, but there is only one who has tasted the heights of heaven and brought heaven to earth. His name is Jesus.

Jesus is the only one who has ever come down to earth and then went back up to heaven. His descent and return is a grander feat than anything we might imagine accomplishing.

Jesus came down to show us the way back to God. He came down, identified with our humanity, walked in the tensions of sin and went through with the work God set before him to do. Then, just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness so that the people would recognize God, the cross lifted Jesus up for all to see God’s redemptive gift (Numbers 21:9). Jesus is the gift of redemption Israel was longing for all along.

We go up and down mountains. Jesus comes down but before he returns to heaven, he tore the curtain in the temple, ripped it from top to bottom, opening the way into the holy of holies and the presence of God. Because of this, Jesus opened the path and blazed the trail for us to meet God. Jesus is the guide who has come down from heaven to lead us back by his redemptive work on the cross. The trail is clear. The path is sure. The curtain is torn. The way is open. Jesus has come to open heaven for us.

When Jesus models prayer, he says, “May your kingdom come. Your will be done. On earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:5-15). Praise Jesus for being part of the answer to his own prayer. Jesus brings heaven to us. He shows us how we can live as a part of the kingdom both now and forever. List some of the aspects of heaven can you enjoy now because Jesus came to earth.

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By Donna Burns

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