Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.
-- Isaiah 43:19
Of all the words to describe the Bible, timeless is one of the best. After all, a repeated lesson in Scripture is that there are certain truths and principles that are as relevant today as they were 2,000 years ago. For instance, it’s hard to argue that we don’t reap what we sow in life. If we spend our lives loving our neighbors as ourselves and otherwise make a positive difference among friends and strangers alike, good will result in one form or another. On the other hand, we can expect a much more negative outcome from a lifestyle involving habitual theft, lying and cheating.
Nothing has changed in God’s eyes.
But while His truths and principles remain constant, another ongoing Biblical theme is God’s willingness to spring a surprise or two on those who think they know it all. Every once in a while, God likes to do a new thing. And He tends to accomplish His plans in some very unexpected ways and places through some even more unlikely characters.
You can see this throughout the Old and New Testaments: Moses, called to confront the powerful Pharaoh of Egypt, had a speech impediment. King David was a just a shepherd boy when he killed mighty Goliath. Jesus – God’s own Son – was born in a filthy animal stable and spent His ministry in an obscure corner of the Roman Empire. And His disciples were a disreputable assortment including fishermen, a tax collector and even a terrorist! Paul, the great missionary who wrote several books of the Bible, initially persecuted Christians before he literally saw the Light. The respected religious authorities of the time were astonished by it all. It just wasn’t what they expected.
Yes, God chose an unlikely bunch. And He used each and every one of them in ways that have shaped our walks as Christ-followers to this very day.
As God's church of Believers, we’re a living reminder of how He continues to join unexpected people, places and circumstances to achieve the greater good.
Let us all perceive it!