Friday, December 5, 2014
The Divine Design
Micah, the prophet, is not as well known as some of those who lived during his lifetime. While he walked the earth as a servant of God, Isaiah, Hosea, and Amos were also alive and preaching some of the same themes as this one known as a minor prophet. Certainly, the body of written work attributed to Micah is much less than these others. The seven chapters of Micah hardly compare to the sixty-six of Isaiah. While there are many powerful sections found within the writings of this minor prophet, the one remembered in this season comes from what we know as the 2nd verse of the 5th chapter, "But, you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah, who are one of the little clans of Judah, from you shall come forth for me one who is to rule in Israel."
When the men from the East showed up in Herod's court seeking directions to the King of the Jews, the Jewish religious leaders used this word of prophecy to answer them. What looks like such a minor detail in the story suddenly becomes one filled with importance. What was happening in those days was not just about coincidence. It was not just about the Emperor Augustus requiring a census that sent Joseph to his hometown. Instead, what becomes even more obvious is that God was orchestrating the events which were taking place in those days. And, it was not just something decided on a whim, but something that had been worked out as a part of the plan of the Almighty. While a human decree may have moved Joseph to Bethlehem, it was the hand of God which was bringing all things together at a time which the Apostle Paul would describe by writing, "But when the fullness of time had come, God sent His Son..." (Galatians 4:4)
God's ways have not changed. Neither has His nature. He can still be counted on to act in purposeful ways. We can still know that our life has a design and that God is seeking to move us forward into the plan that He has perfected for us. And, of course, the good news is that even when we circumvent the plan of God, reject it, or choose another, He does not give up on us, but returns to us with a Word that will set our feet on the course He has planned for us from the very beginning. He can always be counted on to be at work in our lives in such a way as to bring us home to Him.