Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: This sermon deals with things not turning out in life as we had expected them to do by looking at John The Baptist.

It’s Not What I Expected!

5/30/99 Psalm 77:1-12 Luke 1:47-80 Text Matthew 11:1-11 & Mark 6:14-29

Have you ever ordered something from a magazine or off TV and you thought, “boy it would be great to have one of those.” The price was right, so you sent off for it and when you opened the package, you immediately felt, “Man, this is not what I expected to get.”

I saw an ad in a computer magazine for a processor which would make any computer work faster so long as you chose the correct model number. The ad said, “you pop out your old processor and pop this one in and that’s all to it.” It cost a$119, and this company did not allow you to return merchandise. So I read that ad as carefully as possible. I ordered the part, popped out the old processor put in the new and my computer promptly stopped working. I then looked at the book which came with it, and it had a whole list of reasons of why this thing might not work in your computer.

I had to spend another $87 to get a part to make it work in my computer. After putting in that part in , half of the computer programs I use, would no longer work on my computer. I spent literally 30 minutes on hold on the phone on three occasions to get technical support. That added $10 to my phone bill. The last person I got on tech support knew less than I did about the product. I finally took out the part, sent back the second part for a refund and swallowed the loss of the $119 plus the $10 phone bill just to get back my old computer.

Life is going to be full of unexpected situations, in which you will be glad to be able to just get back to what you use to have. We may choose a college major or a particular job only to find out, this is not what I expected. We may choose a marriage partner or decided to have a child only to find out, “this is not what I expected.” We may choose to buy a house in a certain area or to buy a particular kind of a car only to find out, “this is not what I expected.

Any one who has made a serious commitment to follow God is going to run into situations in which they will say, “God, this is not what I expected.” Let’s look at a young man who should have had a long prosperous life. Even before he was born, an angel had told his father, “he is going to be a great preacher and will lead many back to the Lord”. As the boy grew up, he kept hearing the stories about how his father could not speak from the moment he first received news he would have a son, until after he had named his son by writing it on a tablet.

People would look at him and say “one day that boy is going to be somebody. Do you remember his birth”. But even though his father had been a priest, he did not become one. His mother and father were both dead now because they were way up in years when he was born. He was living in the desert By age 18, nothing had happened like the prophecies had said would happen..

He must have been thinking, “Lord, this is not what I expected. It certainly is not what my parents expected.” But he hung in their with the Lord, dressed in clothing made of camel hair with a leather belt around his waste. His food consisted of locusts and wild honey. People had pretty much forgotten his so called miraculous birth and his alleged mission from God. He was in his twenties now, and now when people saw him, they would say, “now there’s one life that did not turn out the way I expected.”

But then one day, in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, the Bible tells us that the word of the of God came to John in the desert. God must have said, “John I’ve heard your prayers time and time again, but the time was not ripe.” But now it’s time to do what I promised your parents you would do.’ It was about 25 years ago that God had made a promise to his parents. Part of the reason we do not get what we expected from God, is that we think in terms of praying today and getting it tomorrow. When God gives us a word, it may take years for it to come to pass. Our job is to get ready to make it happen.

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Greg Nance

commented on Aug 14, 2010

Thanks so much for a great presentation on the powerful story of John the Baptist! I have been blessed.

Larry East

commented on Jul 17, 2012

Great message. I was moved by your presentation of John''s story

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