So finally God fell silent. For four hundred years there was no hero, no judge, no king, no prophet.
No visitation, no message, no prophesy, no word form God.
Something happened and an angel appeared to Zacharias and told him they would have a son who would prepare the way for the coming of the Lord.
Something happened and an angel visited Mary with the news that she would give birth to the Son of God.
Something happened and an angel appeared to her betrothed, Joseph and told him that the child was conceived of the Holy Spirit and He would be called Emanuel, God with us.
Something happened and the Son of God was born in a stable.
And angels appeared to shepherds and said ‘Unto you is born a Savior, Christ the Lord.’
And they sang ‘Glory to God in the highest and peace and good will toward men.’
And the shepherds went to the stable and humbly worshiped the child.
And wise men, wealthy men, kings came from the east to worship Him.
The last chapter of the last book of the Old Testament, Malachi, prophecy’s of the coming of a new Elijah, the forerunner of the Christ. That prophecy was fulfilled early in the gospels. You can imagine the excitement. After four hundred years of silence suddenly angels appearing, the rumored birth of the Messiah, wise men coming to worship. Then thirty some years later there comes the promised Elijah and then the ministry of Christ. A message completely different from the preaching of the Pharisees. Light and joy and peace. Love. God was something different than they had thought, than they had been led to believe.
But then it changed. Christ was taken and crucified. He was dead. Not the Christ. Not the Messiah. There were rumors that He had risen from the grave. But if so where was the king, the warrior who was worth to ascend to the throne of David? Where was the mighty one who would throw off the rule of Rome and restore the kingdom of Israel?
They didn’t get the deliverance they were expecting, the deliverance they wanted. Instead they got the deliverer they needed.
What happens when you don’t get the deliverance you asked for, the deliverance you wanted, the deliverance you thought you needed? If it’s financial it would be nice to win a lottery. Not the big one that would make you as rich as Bill Gates. A million, even a hundred thousand would be enough to avert the crisis and relieve the pressure. God can and does do miracles but sometimes His deliverance is through instead of around or over. More often His miracle is not spectacular provision. It’s not the lottery. It’s daily bread.
Paul prayed three times for deliverance from his thorn in the flesh. God said, “My grace is sufficient for you. My strength is made prefect in your weakness.”
So what is it? Money, health, a besetting sin? It would be nice to get past it and never have to think about it again. A savior, a deliverer, and true king could do that, couldn’t He?
Sometimes it works that way. But sometimes it’s not deliverance for all time that we get. Sometimes it’s daily deliverance that we get. We don’t get what we want. We get what we need.