Lent is a season of 40 days (not counting Sundays) leading up to Easter Morning. It is modeled after the 40 day period Jesus spent in the wilderness being tempted by Satan (Matt. 4:1-11; Mk. 1:12-13; Lk. 4:1-12), which in turn was the fulfillment of many other 40 day events in Scripture (the Flood, Israel’s 40 years in the wilderness, Moses’ time on Mt. Sinai, the repentance of Nineveh, etc). In this period of testing, Jesus showed himself to be the Faithful Son of God who would go on to suffer for our sins and defeat the Serpent once and for all.

As with the rest of the Christian Year, Lent is an attempt to see the life of Christ lived out in the lives of His people. As with the other seasons, the assigned Gospel readings for each Sunday set the tone. These include: Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness, His call for costly discipleship, His cleansing of the Temple, and His predictions of his suffering and death.

Therefore, the season of Lent is a season of giving thanks for Our Suffering Servant. It is a season for lamenting and confessing our sin which necessitated his atoning sacrifice. During Lent we will be encouraging one another to follow Jesus through the disciplines of repentance, prayer, and works of mercy—living not by bread alone “but by every Word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matt. 4:4).