Welcome to the 4th Week of Advent!
December 21, 2014
Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz, 11 “Ask the Lord your God for a sign, whether in the deepest depths or in the highest heights.”
12 But Ahaz said, “I will not ask; I will not put the Lord to the test.”
13 Then Isaiah said, “Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of humans? Will you try the patience of my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.
We like signs. Give us clear indicators of what lies ahead, an unambiguous portent of things to come. I remember trying to make a decision years ago about what college to attend- and I was looking anywhere for a sign: handwriting in the sky, a sign on the side of a bus, anything. Just tell me what to do, God, and I’ll do it! Except… I may not. Zechariah was visited by a real-life angel- and still didn’t believe. Ahaz, in this passage, was given a neon-bright, vivid sign, and still he didn’t trust God. The people of Israel were guided daily by a cloud and pillar of fire- and still they doubted. Just give us a sign, God, and we’re all yours. No more questions.
In His graciousness and His unquenchable desire to be known, God still gives signs. Like a virgin having a baby. Or Jesus making blind eyes see and lifeless limbs move. Or Christ Himself nailed to a cross and walking out of a grave 3 days later. And God is still giving us signs that point to Himself: each sunrise, every rotation of the planet speaks of His glory and faithfulness. Every loving word and gracious act in the name of Jesus points back to Him. The best part is this: You can be a sign. A real one. Your life, if you’re willing, can be a signpost, aiming attention right at Jesus. Through word and deed, you can point the way. What are you saying with your life?
What signs has God given you of His faithfulness and love for you?
Discuss ways that God shows Himself to us in everyday ways. Talk about how we can be signs to point people to Jesus.