“After all this, Lord, will you hold yourself back? Will you keep silent and punish us beyond measure?” Isaiah 64:12

“When God is silent, He is not still. God does some of His best work in the dark. Trust Him–He’s there.” Tony Evans

Sometimes silence can be peaceful, other times silence can be a little disconcerting.  Have you ever sent a sensitive message or letter, eagerly waiting for a response, and days went by with no answer?  If you ever have moments of insecurity like me, you start to imagine the worst-case scenario: maybe the recipient is mad or hurt by the message.  Or maybe, they just do not care!  Most of the time you end up getting a response, but, occasionally, none ever comes, leaving things unresolved.

The Bible records that the Hebrews, God’s chosen people who had a covenant relationship with him, experienced the same disconcerting silence on a much larger scale.  For centuries, they heard direct messages from God through judges or prophets.  They not only heard his voice, but He helped them conquer lands and performed amazing miracles on their behalf.  The nations around them recognized that the Hebrew God was different and that He had a special relationship with His people.  Then, after 3,400 years of direct interaction, suddenly, God was silent!  Not just a few days of silence or even a few weeks but four hundred years of silence!  No one, neither priest nor prophet, heard anything directly from God.  I can imagine that the Hebrews were wondering what they had done to incur God’s silence.  Did this silence indicate that God was mad, or, worse yet, did he not care about them anymore?  He had promised them a Messiah, a king that would provide redemption and restoration for them.  What if His promises were not true?

Yet, if you follow the genealogy of Jesus, God was not as silent as the Hebrews thought.  As each generation passed, He was continuing a family line that would eventually lead to Jesus.  He was waiting for the perfect time and place to introduce the Messiah, not just a Savior for the Hebrews, but for all of mankind!  This is a reminder to all of us that, no matter how silent God may appear, He is always working behind the scenes and is faithful to His promises!

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