Nu’uanu Baptist Church / April 14, 2021
We serve a miraculous God. He just spoke and the universe came into being. You can’t get any more miraculous than that! Our God is all powerful! However, there are times when God doesn’t choose to do the miraculous. Have you noticed that? I want to share with you one of those times.
The Christmas story from Matthew chapter two is well known. We read it, at least, every Christmas. I want to look at verses 13-15:
“After they were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, “Get up! Take the child and his mother, flee to Egypt, and stay there until I tell you. For Herod is about to search for the child to kill him.” So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night, and escaped to Egypt. He stayed there until Herod’s death, so that what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet might be fulfilled: Out of Egypt I called my Son.”
This passage begins with an angel speaking to Joseph in a dream. That is miraculous. He tells him to take Jesus and flee to Egypt. Fleeing is not miraculous.
Up to this point Matthew has recorded the miraculous fulfillment of prophesy, the miraculous virgin birth, the miraculous visit of an angel to Joseph telling him to not fear taking Mary as his wife, even though she was with child. And then there was the visit of the “wise men." They could not have found the baby Jesus if it wasn’t for the miraculous star that led the way and their desire to worship this newborn King. Only God could have given them that desire.
But God sends an angel to tell them to flee. Couldn’t God have miraculously transported them to Egypt like he transported deacon Philip in Acts 8 where, after speaking to the Ethiopian eunuch about Jesus, Philip was carried away by the “Spirit of the Lord” and the eunuch saw him no more? Better yet, why didn’t God just move King Herod out of the way so they wouldn’t have had to flee in the first place? I know it was the fulfillment of the prophesy, “Out of Egypt I called my Son.” Perhaps that was one reason God did it that way.
I would suggest another reason. Of course, I don’t know for sure, but perhaps God was telling Joseph and is telling us that He does use the miraculous, but He also uses people to accomplish His purposes. In Matthew 2 God uses Joseph, as a father, husband and protector to take his family to Egypt. He had responsibility under God to do that. We also see that God provided a place where Joseph and Mary with little Jesus could flee. Ironically, in God’s providence, it was to the place where their ancestors had been slaves before the exodus. Now it had become a place where they had to flee to.
Perhaps God would tell us that when we ask for help, when we are faced with difficulties, He may respond with a miracle. But He may not. He may use us or others. He will respond in a way that brings glory to Him and displays His grace, love, and care for us during difficult times.
We have folks in our congregation that are experiencing very difficult times. God may do something miraculous to help them. He can surely do it. He is Almighty God. However, because He is Almighty God, He can also fulfill His purposes however He chooses and in His time.
Perhaps God will use you and me. Our responsibility is to pray for people going through difficult times, love them, and minister to them however we can. That is our privilege as Christians and our responsibility. Think about it, if God always did the miraculous, we would never have the privilege of being used by Him to be a blessing to others. However God ministers to those in need, may we be ready to allow Him to use us for His glory.
Annie Armstrong Easter Offering. Our total received so far is $8,645.58 for this offering. We reached our goal of $8,500! Thank you Nu’uanu!
Altar Flowers. Orchids on Sunday were donated by Liana Benn in memory of Dora Lumpkin who would have celebrated her 91st birthday on April 10.
Bible Studies. Join us and be blessed by being in one of our Bible studies throughout the week:
Sunday 9 a.m. - Sunday School classes for men and women at the church before worship.
Monday 7 p.m. - Study of the “Marks of a Healthy Church” online. Contact Pastor Johnny.
Wednesday, 10 a.m. - Study on the “Holiness of God” (R.C Sproul on Rightnowmedia) at the Ware Building.
Wednesday, 7 p.m. - Study of the book of Acts at the church.
Thursday, 6:30 p.m. - Study on the “Holiness of God” (R.C Sproul on Rightnowmedia). Contact Pastor Bob.
Please join us for one of our weekly Bible studies. We are in the process of going through the “Ministry Safe” program and will be adding more Sunday School classes. If you have an interest in joining a class or you feel God might be calling you to teach a children’s class of another class, please let one of the pastors or the church office know. We will be needing teachers.
WMU Missions Celebration. Men and women, HPBC WMU’s Missions Celebration is this Saturday, April 17 at 10 am, on zoom. Click on the Schedule & Breakout Description below for more information. Breakout Sessions are from 1 pm, on various mission topics, including missions stories from Southeast Asia and North Africa. It’s going to be GOOD! So register below. Pre-registration is necessary to receive the zoom information on Friday.