“The Lord Himself
will give you a sign”
The other day I was boarding a plane and entered the terminal as usual.
A stewardess-appearing person rushed toward me and shouted, “What are
you doing here?” I replied, “I’m going to Tucson,” and she demanded,
“Didn’t you read the sign on the door?” When I answered in the negative,
she barked, “Well you SHOULD have!” and told me that her airline had
“taken over this terminal!” - Not the airline I would be traveling with.
I asked where that airline had moved to and she pointed north, which is
where I went. She was right. I should have read the sign.
There are signs all around us: Signs in the ways we act and in our
attitudes, which can be read in the ways that others respond. We should
read them, because they will tell us much about life and about ourselves
that we need to know. The most important signs we need are in the Bible,
God’s Word, and we must open that Book and read. Our future depends on
it, and incredibly many never even bother to try. It tells us our first
need is for the Lord – We must reach out to Him, and then we will begin
Charles Spurgeon asked, “Why do I not call on His name? Why do I run to
this neighbor and that when God is so near and will hear my faintest
call? Why do I sit down and devise schemes and invent plans? Why not at
once roll myself and my burden upon the Lord?”
Why? The answer is unbelief. You may respond, “No, that’s not my
problem. I’m a believer. I trust in the Lord. I believe, therefore this
does not apply to me.” But let’s talk about this a little bit more.
“Unbelief” like “belief” is a verb, an action word. It is not unlike the
word “love”, which is more than emotion for it also requires action in
order for it to be complete.
I’ve met those who love with apparent fervor but action is missing. Many
seem to love their own comfort more than they care for others and do not
give to the need. I have met others who will perform the actions but
lack the heart. They will do for others but don’t seem to care about
those they serve. Each of these responses (in the absence of the other)
misses the real nature of love. It is an abandonment of self in favor of
someone else. I would and will do anything for the object of my love and
I delight in them; would even die for them, much like Jesus died for me.
“Belief” is very much like that. To “believe” in Christ but not trust He
can or will do anything, is a form of unbelief. To believe that He must
respond to your every whim is another expression of unbelief. If you
really trust in Him, you will understand that He cares enough to act
effectively and to do what is needed. To believe in Him as God is to see
that He knows your needs better than you do.
The Lord spoke through Isaiah the prophet to a man named Ahaz, who was
the king of Israel. The king was to “ask for a sign for yourself from
the Lord your God” (Isaiah 7:11). Ahaz, who was not in any way humble,
answered with a false humility, “I will not ask, nor will I test the
Lord” (Isaiah 7:12). Isaiah was not impressed with the response (for he
knew the king’s heart), and since an imminent sign would not be
received, the prophet looked hundreds of years into the future: “When
the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son and shall call His name
Immanuel (God with us)” (Isaiah 7:14).
Often, when we are on a journey, signs are placed on the way. Some are
advertisements, designed to bring income to those who paid for the
signs. Others are intended to be helpful and are provided as a public
service. How would we know when to get off the freeway, except for the
signs that name the various off-ramps? We might simply drive on until we
run out of gas!
With all the competing religious systems in the world, how can we
possibly know the right “off ramp” that will bring us to the Lord God,
Maker of heaven and earth? There are many “signs” from various religions
and books, and you have to carefully check them in order to determine
the correct ramp (way) to take.
It is certain that God is high and holy, beyond the ability of any of us
to grasp Him simply through human understanding. God is set apart from
this world. But He has given us a sign, and His Name is Jesus Christ,
God the Son. In Him, we see both the holiness and the love of God. We
see our need and our deliverance is seen in this continuation of the
words by C. H. Spurgeon:
“My case is urgent and I do not see how I am to be delivered, but this
is no business of mine. He who makes the promise will find ways and
means of keeping it. It is mine to obey His commands; it is not mine to
direct His counsels. I am His servant, not His solicitor. I call upon
Him and He will deliver.” – Charles Spurgeon.
It seems incredible but many seem to think that Jesus died for us on the
cross and then abandoned us to our own devices. He DID die for us, and
He did it out of the greatest love we could imagine. Think on His words:
“You must be born again” (John 3:7). We are born anew in Him, and the
good parent does not birth the child and then abandon them. No, the good
parent NURTURES the child, as our good Lord nurtures you and me.
“The Lord Himself will give you a sign; behold the virgin shall conceive
and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel” (Isaiah 7:14). We are
offered deliverance from sin, from death, and from the selfishness that
plagues mankind. Turn to Him and RECEIVE the One who died for you and
me. He longs to fellowship with you.
I have a “Planner” which is supposed to tell me what to do each day.
Entries have been made which are like “signs” that are supposed to make
life easier. And it would, except I often forget to read it. Open His
Book, His Bible. You will be changed – forever.
Lord, we receive You now. Let us read the “signs” and trust in You. Send
Your Spirit and let us learn through Him. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Ron Beckham, Pastor
Friday Study Ministries
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