Over this summer, I preached a six-week series on a Move of God. I found this series deeply moving as I strolled through the beautiful text from the Bible looking for “how” and “when” God usually moves on humanity. One of the personally challenging things I uncovered was that when God moves, we can often miss what He is doing. Let me take you on a simple journey on how we can miss a move of God.
The first thing we need to understand is that Jesus Christ coming to Earth in the form of a helpless baby was indeed a move of God.
For thousands of years before Mary held the baby Jesus; prophets, priests, rabbis, and judges all predicted the coming of the Messiah more than three hundred times in the Old Testament. We can safely assume that thousands of teachers over thousands of years spoke to millions of people about a Messiah coming from Heaven to Earth to save God’s people. All of Israel for many, many generations knew (at least presumably knew) that a move of God was to take place.
The Old Testament prophecies were detailed and specific about how the Messiah would be born of a woman (Genesis 3:15) and born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2) and come from the line of Abraham (Genesis 12:3). That He would be an heir to David’s throne (2Samuel 7:12-13) and He would be born of a virgin and called Emmanuel (Isaiah 7:14) were also specific prophecies that Israel would have learned and heard repeatedly. But after more than three hundred prophecies and the miraculous nature of Jesus’ birth and His undeniable miracles that He performed, sadly, the vast majority of Jesus’ day missed a move of God. They missed God’s move because they expected God to do one thing, but He did another.
It was Jesus who lamented: "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, … How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing!” (Luke 13:34) Again Jesus said with tears flowing from His eyes, "If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.” (Luke 19:42)
The Jews of Jesus’ day were longing for a Messiah, but for others He did not meet their expectations. They thought that the Messiah would set up the Kingdom of God and destroy the idol-worshipping Gentiles through force and war. They expected the Messiah to be a king and warrior, but Jesus came as a Lamb of God, that was slaughtered.
So, they missed a move of God -thousands of years in the making because of their false expectations. This realization has jumped out at me and has caused me to examine my own expectations of the Lord. Frankly, it should for you as well.
What you and I believe about Jesus leads us to form expectations of Him. If we falsely believe what Jesus is, we will have false expectations about what we can do, and what He requires from us to do.
Paul spent some time correcting the record for the little church in Colossae as he wrote to them on the true nature of Christ. Paul wrote that Jesus was, “…the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.” (Colossians 1:15-17)
Paul basically concludes that Jesus is the image of God, over all creation and that “by Him”, “through Him”, “in Him” and “For Him” all things consist.
Look at the last part of that verse, “all things consist.” That phrase is saying that Jesus basically holds all things together. My life starts to fall apart when I don’t let Jesus hold it together.
Do you want a move of God? Yes, of course you and I do. So, take a look at your expectations of Jesus. They are based on what you believe Him to be. He must be Lord, Master, and Father. He fulfills no other role until He is those first. When we align ourselves up with His position properly, we understand our position as servants and sons and daughters and can see God moving every day.