Sometimes we find ourselves going through unexpected events that if we allow it, can reveal a strength in us, that we would have never known, had we had not gone through it. We can read the Bible and pray all day long, but we really don’t know if we really know how to fight the enemy, until you go through something
Life is full of unexpecteds. Unexpected events, unexpected journeys, and many other unexpected things. So, let's look at what God can do through us, when we learn to embrace life's unexpecteds! Luke 2:1-7 1 And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. T he Romans taking a census were not uncommon, they were taken every few years.The census decrees were one of the Roman empire’s administrative practices.Their purpose of a census was simply to have an exact number of people within the empire, so they knew how much taken money to expect, to set a budget, and it also allowed them to know how many people lived in a certain area, in order to either build up or move around military resources, based on the number of people in a given area.
And although, the Romans were using this census for administrative purposes, God was using it to fulfill prophecy.
When the magi came from the East and asked Herod about where the Christ was to be born, Herod gathered up all the chief priests and scribes, and asked them.
Matthew 2:5-6 5 So they said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it is written by the prophet:
6 ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are not the least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you shall come a Ruler who will shepherd My people Israel.’ ” - That is a summary of a prophecy by Micah, from Micah 5:2-5… but honestly, I believe they left out one very significant detail from Micah 5:2 Micah 5:2 “… Yet out of you shall come forth to Me the One to be Ruler in Israel, whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.”
from everlasting can also be translated: from the days of eternity
Some Christians, if not many, wonder what might happen in the coming years. Many issues are coming up that are and will continue to clash with our Christian beliefs, and I’m sure that is causing anxiety in people.
The Jews at this time had to have had similar anxieties when they heard this decree of a census. They must have known the purpose of the census, purposed to subdue them further through more taxation, military control.
"Another census. How much more money are they going to take from us? Why won’t God do something about this?"
But what the enemy meant for harm, God meant for their good!
Throughout history, God has taken those things that the enemy meant for destruction and used them to accomplish something great.
A couple of significant examples are:
In Exodus, Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers, but God raised up Joseph in Egypt to a place where he was only below the Pharaoh, in order to save numerous lives, including the lives of his brothers, who sold him into slavery.
Paul was visiting and encouraging churches all over the place, when he was imprisoned.But because he was in prison, he had to then begin writing letters, which is why we have most of the New Testament today.
But the greatest example, is when the enemy caused and innocent Jesus to be beaten and crucified, but God used that event to save and redeem the lives of countless people.
If you allow it, God can turn around anything in your life, and accomplish something great through it.
Luke 2:3-5 3 So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.
4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child. 6 So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered.
7 And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. As part of the decree for the census, Joseph had to register in the city of his clan, and since his clan was David, that meant he had to go and register in Bethlehem. Which would have been a 4-6 day journey from Nazareth, depending on how fast they traveled and how many stops they made along the way.
So Joseph, and Mary with him, both make the trip from Nazareth to Bethlehem.
Nazareth, which was referred to by Isaiah, in Isaiah 9:1, as Galilee of the Gentiles, to Bethlehem… the City of David, whose name means, “the house of bread.” Although he had freedom to live anywhere in the world, and belonged to the clan of David, and his ancestral city meant, “the house of bread”, Joseph chose to live in a place referred to as “Galilee of the Gentiles.”
This Unexpected Journey was a way for Joseph to get back to his roots. To not continue to live as a Gentile, someone who does not even know God, but to renew his relationship with the Lord. Joseph led by God, to take a journey to the place he truly belonged. He was being led by God on a journey, to find his roots and meet His Savior. Joseph was being led to the city that was called “the house of bread” to meet His Savior, which would be referred to as the bread of life. - Joseph was ready to go to a God type of destination, so God called Joseph to go on an unexpected journey It didn’t matter that lived in a place referred to the Galilee of the Gentiles
- A city in Nazareth, that people frequently asked, if anything good could come from it
- But God didn’t call Joseph because of his location
- And God didn’t care about Joseph’s current situation God called Joseph because where he was going…
- And Joseph was going on a journey that would change His life forever
- Joseph was going on a journey to find his roots in a city called “the house of bread”
- And Joseph was going there to meet His Savior, which was referred to as “the bread of life.”
Sometimes… Unexpected Journeys will lead you to a God type of destinations
Sometimes… God allows us to go on the type of journeys that we would not have chosen for ourself, to take us to the place that we’ve been asking God to take us.
We ask God to take us to a God type destination, but when we ask for those things, we don’t realize what type of journey it will take to get us there.
Have A Blessed Day! Pastor George Finney New Life Church NewLifeKenefick@yahoo.com