Looks Can Be Deceiving.
“This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies says: All this may seem impossible to you now, a small remnant of God’s people. But is it impossible for me? says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.” – Zechariah 8:6 NLT
God is telling Zechariah incredible news regarding Israel’s future. He is describing a time in the future when Israel will not only be restored, Jerusalem rebuilt and the Temple completed, but the people of Israel will be abundant, filling the land and once again serving Him. Things will be radically different. Instead of punishing His people as He had done in the past, God will bless them abundantly and restore them to favor. This all had to be hard for Zechariah to comprehend as he looked around at a partially completed foundation on the Temple, the incomplete walls of the city of Jerusalem, and the demoralized remnant who were struggling with the task God had given them due to the opposition that faced them. And God knew what Zechariah was thinking. So He tells Zechariah, “All this may seem impossible to you now.” It’s as if God is saying, “I know this doesn’t look so good right now, but don’t judge Me based on what you see.” But isn’t that what we do? We take a look at our current circumstances and make sweeping judgments regarding everything from God’s faithfulness and presence to His love and power. If things are not going too well for us, we automatically assume that God is either angry with us or oblivious to us. He is upset and punishing us or out of touch and ignorant of us. We pray and He doesn’t answer us in the way we believe He should, so we conclude that He is not hearing us or is simply refusing to do what we’ve asked Him to do. Our view of life begins to influence our view of God, when it should really be the other way around. God tells Zechariah, “I know this all seems impossible to you right now. After all, there’s just a handful of you and the job is far from complete. BUT THIS ISN’T ABOUT YOU!”
The point of it all is that NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR GOD. He knew what was going on. He was well aware of the situation. He was not surprised by what was taking place down in Jerusalem. He had a full grasp of the facts regarding the status of the Temple, the presence of opposition, the size of the work force and the condition of their hearts. Which is why He took so much time to tell Zechariah His full plans for their future. Then He simply said, “Be strong and finish the task!” (Zechariah 8:9 NLT). “So don’t be afraid. Be strong, and get on with rebuilding the Temple” (Zechariah 8:13 NLT). This wasn’t about their strength and ability to get things, but about their faith and trust in a God who could do ANYTHING. They just needed to do what He had called them to do and leave the rest up to Him. God had gotten them back to Jerusalem, provided a royal edict to secure their work, and provided the funds to pay for the entire restoration project. He had more than done His part. But they had failed to complete theirs. It was way too easy for them to take a look at their relative lack of success and the overwhelming size of the task at hand and become disillusioned. The same thing is true of us. We get overwhelmed and begin to feel way in over our heads, and start to wonder if God is with us at all. If we ever begin to think it’s all up to us, we are missing the point. Nothing is impossible for God. That’s the point. There is not one thing He can’t handle and doesn’t have fully in His control. Nothing is impossible for God. That’s the message we need to hear. There is nothing that God can’t do. There is not a single circumstance that is out of ability or power to handle. Nothing is impossible for God. That’s the message of the Bible. It is all about God, not us. It is all about His power, His will, His promises, His faithfulness, His salvation, His Kingdom, and His ability to finish what He has begun and to restore what is broken. Nothing is impossible for Him. Do you really believe that today?
Father, I admit that too often I am like Zechariah, doubting Your power and Your presence. I wonder whether or some things really ARE impossible for You. Intellectually, I know that’s not true, but when things get tough, I begin to wonder. I start to try to solve my own problems and begin to take matters into my own hands. Rather than turn to You, I start to turn to other things and begin to place my hope for salvation elsewhere. Never let me forget that nothing is impossible for You, and that I can’t judge the reality of that statement based on the circumstances of life. You are never limited by the odds or the opposition. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men