Monday, November 19, 2007

Give Us A Sign

Matthew 16:2-4 He answered them: "When evening comes you say, 'It will be good weather because the sky is red.' And in the morning, 'Today will be stormy because the sky is red and threatening.' You know how to read the appearance of the sky, but you can't read the signs of the times. An evil and adulterous generation wants a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign on Jonah." Then He left them and went away.

Once again we see the Pharisees trying to test and trap Jesus. This time they tell Him that they want to see a sign from heaven, and the verses above give us the answer that Jesus gave to these men. He told them that they were able to predict the weather because of the appearance of the sky, but that they were clueless about the plan of God. These were the teachers of Israel, and they were completely missing what God had been promising them for 2000 years. Jesus called them an evil and adulterous generation and said the only sign they would receive was the sign of Jonah.

What they were doing by asking for a sign from heaven was discrediting His miracles and His ministry. So Jesus told them there would be the sign of Jonah, and no other (because they had already missed all of the other "signs). So what is the sign of Jonah? Jesus was telling them two things here: first, and most obvious, this is a reference to His death and resurrection. In Matthew 12:40 Jesus says that just like Jonah was in the belly of the sea monster for three days, so would He be in the heart of the earth. The second, and not quite as obvious aspect to this sign was the fact that because of their rejection of Jesus the gospel would go to the gentiles just as Jonah had done by taking the message of God to the Ninivites.

But what does any of this have to do with us today? I'm glad you asked. How many times do we read God's word and doubt what it says? How many times do we fail to recognize the hand of God in the situations of our lives? How many times do we just ignore what we know to be true instead of acting on faith and trusting God to do what He said He would do? In a lot of ways we are just like the Pharisees of Jesus' day. We are more concerned with our particular denomination than we are with a personal relationship with Him. Don't get so caught up in the things of this world that you miss the most important thing, Jesus.
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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

nice stuff here, very very nice