Monday, July 7, 2008
When God Seems Distant
“John the Baptist, who was now in prison, heard about all the things the Messiah was doing. So he sent his disciples to ask Jesus, ‘Are you really the Messiah we’ve been waiting for, or should we keep looking for someone else?’ ” (Matthew 11:2–3)
Have you ever had something happen in your life that caused you to say, “Where is God?” No less than the greatest prophet who ever lived, John the Baptist, faced this struggle.
John had put it all on the line for Jesus Christ. He had baptized Him in the Jordan River. He pointed his own disciples to Jesus, whom he believed was the Messiah. John had clearly pledged his complete loyalty to Jesus.
Yet a strange series of events took place after that. One moment, he was out preaching to the multitudes and baptizing people. The next moment, he was in prison.
The great John the Baptist began to entertain some doubt. So he sent his disciples to Jesus with this question, “Are you really the Messiah we’ve been waiting for, or should we keep looking for someone else?”
Jesus’ disciples and John commonly believed that Jesus would establish His kingdom then and there. But they failed to recognize that before Christ would establish His kingdom, He would first come to suffer and die for the sins of humanity. John misunderstood the prophecies of Scripture, and therefore felt that Jesus was not doing what He was supposed to do.
Sometimes we, too, misunderstand God and His Word when He doesn’t do what we think He should do or when He doesn’t work as quickly as we would like Him to. But even when we cannot understand God’s ways, His methods, or His timing, He still asks us to trust Him. And He is trustworthy.
Copyright © 2008 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved. Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.
For more relevant and biblical teaching from Pastor Greg Laurie, go to www.harvest.org.
The Bible says, "If any man be in Christ, he is an altogether different kind of person. Old things have passed away. Everything becomes fresh and new." That is the truth I want you and everyone who reads this book to come away with. And it is a message not just of hope, but also of Christ's redemptive power.