Why Forty Days for Lent?
by Dr. Dan Sharp, Minister of Worship
As the Lenten season approaches, you may have wondered how it arrived at a period of forty days. When you think about it, the number forty recurs again and again throughout Scripture.
It rained forty days and nights at the time of Noah’s Flood. The Israelites wandered for forty years in the desert as the result of their lack of faith regarding the forty day spying mission to Canaan (one year for each day).
Moses received the Law from God after a forty-day stay on Mt. Sinai. Elijah, the great prophet, was on Mt. Sinai (Horeb) for forty days as well, as he encountered God.
The Ninevites repented in sack cloth and ashes for forty days and were spared God’s judgment. Jesus spent forty days in the wilderness being tempted by the devil just prior to the beginning of His public ministry.
Do you see a connecting theme in each of these instances? (There is at least one. An answer in the next Meditation.)