“Tell me if you see a pattern here?”
Exodus 24:18 Moses entered the cloud, and went up on the mountain. Moses was on the mountain for forty days and forty nights.
The rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights.
I stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights, as I had done the first time. And once again the LORD listened to me. The LORD was unwilling to destroy you.
Then I lay prostrate before the LORD as before, forty days and forty nights; I neither ate bread nor drank water, because of all the sin you had committed, provoking the LORD by doing what was evil in his sight.
Jonah began to go into the city, going a day’s walk. And he cried out, “Forty days more, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!”
The Israelites again did what was evil in the sight of the LORD, and the LORD gave them into the hand of the Philistines forty years.
Forty lashes may be given but not more; if more lashes than these are given, your neighbor will be degraded in your sight.
And the LORD’s anger was kindled against Israel, and he made them wander in the wilderness for forty years, until all the generation that had done evil in the sight of the LORD had disappeared.
Forty is a holy number. Is is the required period of time needed to cleanse us from sinful habits and prepare us for rescue, redemption, and recovery from them.
This month we “finish up” the 40 days of Lent during which time we used prayer, fasting, worship and almsgiving to prepare us for the next stage of our spiritual journey: the 40 days of Easter. During Lent we were “on our knees”.
The 40 days of Easter is designed to get us up, off our knees, and on our feet! The 40 days of Easter are designated to integrating Christ’s resurrected presence into our lives as we live in the redemption of our sins and the power of God’s grace.