Summary: This message explores those Divine encounters that the Lord orchestrates for everyone’s life, even in areas you may have given up on.
The Bible is full of relevant stories and principles that we can incorporate into our lives. The passage here in Luke 7 is no different. It contains some very interesting and amazing facts. In Luke 7:1, we see jesus entering Capernaum, and the day after, in 7:11, we see Him entering Nain. Those two cities were about 21 miles apart, and of course, then, those miles were traveled by foot. In Capernaum, Jesus met a man, a centurion, whose servant was sick, and ready to die. The man beseeched Jesus to merely speak the word, and he believed his servant would recover.
That’s exactly what happened. The Bible says it was the greatest level of faith that Jesus had ever seen. But the situation in Nain is much different. First, we see death, a funeral procession. And note that there is no one imploring the Lord’s help. No one was pray-ing, or asking Jesus for help. But out of pure com-passion, Jesus worked a miracle. You see, He knew the woman - a widow, and this corpse was her only son. And Jesus also knew the corpse! He knew the loss. He knew the need. He knew the hurt and pain.
And so, without a prayer meeting, without an intercessory prayer group, or anything, the ord just walked over to that coffin and touched it, and spoke life into that young man! It is an awesome miracle of mercy!
But I believe there is more for us to see and grasp in the text, for there are principles that are relevant to our lives. In Luke 7, there is one man who is ready to die, and another young man who has already died. Do you know that it doesn’t matter where you go, people will be struggling with the same or similar problems? Some are reached in time, while for others, it appears to be late.
But God never shows up late. Even when we think He’s late, He’s not. He’s an "on-time God." Remember, time means nothing to God. He is not restricted by time as we are. Note: There is never a time when God runs out of time. He even stopped time for Joshua. However God does it, however He moves, He is never intimidated by time. And knowing that He is Sovereign, and the Creator of time, we can take comfort in knowing: He is always on time!
What we see in this passage is a Sovereign move of God. God initiated, God ordained. Now, that doesn’t mean that we’re not to pray for God to do anything. The Bible clearly teaches that we are to ask, implore, and beseech God’s help in our lives. What it doesn mean, perhaps, is that what God can and will do at times will surpass the capacity of our thinking. He can do things that are beyond our ability to imagine.
Jesus has just spoken, in Capernaum, a life giving, life changing word. And now He comes to Nain. And as He draws nigh to the GATE, here comes this sad, sorrowful scene of a funeral procession. They were taking a young man to his burial. They said, "It’s over, it’s done. He’s gone. There is no hope now. He’s dead, and we must admit: He will never live again."
But what they didn’t know was that God had ordained and orchestrated for them A MEETING AT THE GATE! Some people, even listening now, may have all but been in a funeral procession. You’ve got areas and situations that you think are hopeless and over. You think faith is futile, and hope is worthless. You may be on your way to the cemetery to bury your dreams. But God is saying to you today: You are coming upon the gate!
There are specific people, with specific situations that need to know, that, what you think is over; what you think is through and hopeless; what you think is dead and depleted; what the devil is trying to get you to bury, and dismiss, and write off as impossible; God is wanting to raise up those areas of death in your life! You are approaching the gate! I believe that you are about to meet up with the hand of God at the gate!
The enemy, as well as other people, may be telling you to go ahead and carry it out, but God is saying, "Stay right there! I’m coming in!" God is about to move on your behalf. He’s about to raise up what you thought was dead. God’s about to put back in your hands what you thought you would never hold again. He wants to restore the life that was robbed from you.
Someone needs to know: "Don’t walk too fast. Don’t be in a hurry to get to the cemetery. It may be dead, and you may not be able to bring it back to life. But you are coming upon the gate of a glorious encounter with God." I believe God’s hand is about to touch the coffin of your confusion, and deliver back to you what death has tried to hold captive.