“Hound of Heaven” Meditations: 26. The Long Silence Ends
Lk 1:11 then an angel of the Lord appeared to him
Merely because God goes silent it doesn’t mean He’s not watching and waiting. He never stops pursuing His goal, it’s just that sometimes it is not very obvious or simply that our spiritual sight isn’t good enough to see what He’s doing.
Over four hundred years have passed and nothing has been heard from heaven and then one day, without any warning a lowly priest finds an angel in his presence. It was going to be the first of a number of God interventions as heaven prepares the way for the Son of God to leave heaven and appear in the disguise of a human baby.
Back in Study 21 I suggested there were three reasons God created Israel, the first two being to reveal Himself and to reveal the sinfulness of mankind. Now we come to the third vital reason: to create a God-environment into which to place His Son, an environment where they can talk God talk, have God expectations, so when the time comes Jesus can act into this environment without many explanations. They already know.
So now we have the first of the God interventions after four hundred years of silence, to a priest, a man who will know their history and eventually see how he fits in it. The second intervention comes when his aged wife is enabled to conceive and the one we know as John the Baptist is born. The third intervention is when he is born his father bursts forth in Holy Spirit prophecy. Meanwhile there has been a fourth intervention, the same angel comes to a young girl by the name of Mary and explains God’s hopes through her. The intervention follow thick and fast: she miraculously conceives without a man, her fiancé Joseph gets a dream from God, an emperor ensures they will be in Bethlehem for the birth, angels sing to shepherds, a star guides wise men from the east, the Spirit inspires an old men and woman at the temple, Joseph gets more dreams. And then it goes quiet again for thirty years. It’s like a spectacular firework display seen at New Year, an amazing burst of interventions and then afterwards, silence and darkness again and you are just left with the memory.
But this has all been the work of the Hound of Heaven as He presses His plans and purposes forward, paving the way for the most spectacular three years the world has ever known, but for the moment it is silent and dark again but a few people are left wondering. The prophets down through the earlier years had heard things and wondered, leaving their listeners and readers wondering. Someone is coming? Who? What will he be? Faith-on-pause is spelt T-R-U-S-T. It means to be at peace while not knowing. You and me?