I Am Gabriel !
Message No. 0523 | Twitter @GodandUs | www.wisdom-speaks.ca
Isn't it funny that the more familiar you are with someone, the more you do not pay premium attention to his or her promises? The first reaction of a spouse to another spouse’s promise is, many times, doubt and asking of questions like ‘are you sure?’ It’s the same with friend to friend also; we hear statements like ‘I’ll believe it when you do it.’ The problem is that we have all gotten familiar with broken promises that we find it difficult to trust anyone. However, it gets scary when we extend the same doubts to the promises of God.
In Luke chapter 1, the Bible records that an angel of God appeared to Zacharias, a priest, married to his wife Elizabeth. They were both righteous before God, walking in all His commandments and ordinances, blameless. With such glowing credentials, you wouldn’t expect him to incur the wrath of God’s angel, for something as serious as unbelief. What really happened? His marriage was childless, and he was old, but the time came for God to answer his prayers, so He sent an angel to deliver the message of a child, a specific child, with clear descriptions, including the name of the child.
With such a clear message, the angel expected Zacharias to jump up for joy and say thank you Lord, but instead, he saw a cold response from this respected man of God. In verse 18:
Zechariah asked the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.”
You know the kind of feeling you have when you have mustered all of the efforts you have to deliver a convincing message to someone, and the person reacts by giving you the ‘Doubting Thomas’ look? It feels like a punch in the stomach that you were not believed, doesn’t it? Yeah, that’s how the angel felt also. He was so taken aback that he retorted in verses 19 and 20:
“I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their appointed time.”
Gabriel was so mad that he pronounced instant punishment for Zacharias, which held until the child, John, was born. That was a punishment of at least nine months!
If we would be sincere with ourselves, do we fare better than Zacharias today in our trust of God? When the pastor declares that our prayers are answered, how do we react? We first say ‘amen,’ then we say ‘thank you pastor, I really hope that God will do it as you said;’ translated: I am not so sure about that, I’ll wait till it happens.
Since we are not happy when we are speaking the truth and people are doubting us, we shouldn’t expect God to be happy also when we do not trust His promises. In Numbers 23:19, the Bible says:
“God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?
And in Hebrews 6:18, the Bible says:
God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged.
It is true that we sometimes do not see the fulfilment of God’s promises when we expect to see them, but we need to realize that our expected timings are often different from God’s and this is where the problem sometimes lies. We also do not receive His promises because we either do not play our own roles or we do not believe Him, to start with. Contrast Zacharias’ response with that of Mary, a small, inexperienced girl who had no credentials close to what Zacharias had. Mary asked an almost similar question to Zacharias from the angel, but with good reason: she hadn’t known any man and she was not married and until that time (and after that also) no woman had ever given birth without knowing a man. When the angel explained, she said ‘be it unto me according to your word.’
We all need to learn to believe God. Whenever we receive or read God’s promises, we need to remember how happy we are when we are believed and trust God, because, though (as human beings) we can fail people even after we are trusted, God is God and He does not fail anyone. Elizabeth gave birth to John as Gabriel said and only after then was Zacharias’ punishment lifted. We do not need to go down the same route. I prophesy to you that those things you have been waiting for are on their ways to being delivered, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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PLEASE ACT NOW: If you are yet to give your life to Christ, you do not have a covenant with God and His promises do not apply to you. To come under these promises, please surrender your life to Christ today, by praying this prayer: Lord I know that I am a sinner and I am unable to save myself. I am sorry for my sins and I pray that you please forgive me. I am aware that Your Son Jesus died for my sins and I accept Him as my Lord and savior. I surrender my life unto you from this moment. Please take control of my entire being and help me to be obedient to your Word, going forward. Thank you, Lord, for hearing me. I have prayed in Jesus’ name. Amen. If you prayed the foregoing prayer, you have just been born again. Please find a Bible believing church in your area and ask to see the pastor. Let him or her know that you have just given your life to Christ and s/he will guide you on next steps in your journey as a child of God. The Lord bless you!