Surprised by God
Has the Holy Spirit caught you by surprise lately? Has He
unveiled to you a deeper understanding of the person of Jesus Christ?
He always speaks through His inspired Word, the Scriptures.
It is His desire to “guide us into all truth . . . He will show you things to
come” (John 16:13).
Jesus Christ is the one great glorious theme of the Holy
Spirit. He never speaks of Himself because the role of the Spirit of God is to
bear witness to Jesus Christ alone. Jesus said, “He will glorify Me.” The Holy
Spirit is silent concerning Himself so that men see the glory of the Father
revealed in the Son.
On the first Easter Sunday morning Mary Magdalene was
surprised to see that the 2000-pound stone door to the tomb of Jesus was
“already taken away from the tomb” (John 20:1). A little while later, Jesus met
women and greeted them. “And they came up and took hold of His feet and
worshipped Him” (Matthew 28:9). The apostle John tells us Mary was standing
outside the tomb weeping, and as she wept, she saw two angels who asked her,
“Why are you weeping?” She turned around and “beheld Jesus standing there, and
did not know that it was Jesus. He asked her the same question, ‘Woman, why are
you weeping? Whom are you seeking?’” She was quite surprised, “Supposing Him to
be the gardener.” Jesus called her by name. After fully recognizing Jesus she
ran and told the disciples, “I have seen the Lord” (John 20:11-18).
Jesus surprised the startled disciples that same evening
when the doors to their meeting room were shut. “Jesus came and stood in their
midst, and said to then, ‘Peace be with you’” (v. 19).
On that same day on the road to Emmaus two disciples
invited a stranger and much to their surprise as He break bread and blessed it,
“their eyes were opened and they recognized Him; and He vanished from their
sight. And they said to one another, ‘Were not our hearts burning within us
while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures
to us?’” (Luke 24:30-32).
Over and over again for the next forty days Jesus surprised
the disciples for joy with His appearances until He ascended up into a cloud and
was received into heaven. The ascension attempts to put into words what is
beyond words, and describes what is beyond description.
What a surprise in the upper room when the day of Pentecost
had fully come, “And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to
speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was given them utterance” (Acts 2:4).
What a surprise to see and hear Peter preach the greatest
sermon in his life on the atoning death of Jesus and His resurrection. Three
thousand souls were saved that day (vv. 37-41). The disciples spoke with
boldness and great power giving witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus
The Holy Spirit surprised Saul of Tarsus on the road to
Damascus after he consented to the death of Stephen who “being full of the Holy
Spirit, gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing
at the right hand of God” (8:55). Paul was suddenly surprised when he saw “a
light from heaven flash around him . . . and heard a voice saying to him, ‘Saul,
Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” (9:3-4). Jesus responded, “I am Jesus whom
you are persecuting” (v. 5).
The Holy Spirit indwells us so He can reveal the Lord God
to us. He guides us into all truth concerning the Lord Jesus Christ. He opens
His Scriptures and teaches us from them so that we may glorify Christ.
God loves to surprise us. Has He surprised you lately? Do
you give Him “elbow-room”? Do you look for Him? Do you expect Him to break in
upon you any moment?
Don't expect Christ to come to you only in a certain way.
Lay aside any preconceived ideas of how He should come to you. Expect Him
to come any moment, any hour, at the least expected time in your day.
God is always at work in His surprise visits. He comes at
His perfect timing. Keep your heart tender toward Him so that if He catches you
unawares you will know you are in His presence.
Always be in a state of expectancy. "Even so, come, Lord
Be ready at all times for the Lord’s surprise visits.
“Behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those
who pierced Him; and all the tribes of the earth will mourn over Him. Even so,
Amen” (Revelation 1:7).
Lord, Jesus will I see You today? Even so, come.
Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006
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