The angel, Gabriel, clearly told Zechariah that his wife Elizabeth would have a child and they were to call him “John” (Luke 1:13). Nine months later, elderly Elizabeth miraculously conceived this special baby and the neighbors and relatives gathered to celebrate his circumcision and to give him his name. According to well-established custom they assumed he would take the name of his priestly father.
Luke 1:59-63--When they came to circumcise the child on the eighth day, they were going to name him Zechariah, after his father. But his mother responded, “No! He will be called John.”Then they said to her, “None of your relatives has that name.” So they motioned to his father to find out what he wanted him to be called. He asked for a writing tablet and wrote: HIS NAME IS JOHN. And they were all amazed.
There will come many times in your life when God through the Holy Spirit will give you a clear word. He may ask you to make a move, a career change, to marry someone, to go in a direction counter to what you planned, to share your faith with a stranger, or to help someone in trouble. How He instructs may vary. He may speak to you through Scripture, through a friend or stranger, or to your heart as you are praying. It’s unlikely you will hear from Gabriel, but even that is possible!
Oswald Chamber wrote in Notes On Ezekiel, “There is no room for debate when God speaks.” Once God gives you a word, go with it! But be ready for opposition from unexpected places. People will suggest that you may have misunderstood His word. Opinions may be well-intentioned and come from wise folks that question your judgment. This is simply because humans are prone to make assumptions and to be fallible in their brilliance. If God spoke to you, your responsibility is to be steadfast. Your reply is simple, “His name is John!”
Some won’t like your decision. They will tell you, “But we’ve never done it that way before.” Beware of these spiritually-coated words that determine what God can or cannot do according to the dictates of human tradition. “His name is John.”
When you remain firm against opinions and tradition, people will resort to manipulation. They will go to someone close to you to seek agreement and change your mind. This is simply manipulation. Don’t fall for it. “His name is John.”
The reason many of us fail in our obedience is we make room for discussion what God has already decided. God never asks for us to rationalize, He expects us to reconcile. Stand firm in your walk and do what God tells you. The results will be glorious because His plan is perfect.
Never discuss with anyone when God speaks; discussion on spiritual matters is impertinent. God never discusses with anyone.—Oswald Chambers in Conformed To His Image
©2004 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)