How can I be sure?
Luke 1:18-25 Zechariah asked the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.” (19) The angel answered, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. (20) And now you will be silent and not able to speak until the day this happens, because you did not believe my words, which will come true at their proper time.” (21) Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah and wondering why he stayed so long in the temple. (22) When he came out, he could not speak to them. They realized he had seen a vision in the temple, for he kept making signs to them but remained unable to speak. (23) When his time of service was completed, he returned home. (24) After this his wife Elizabeth became pregnant and for five months remained in seclusion. (25) “The Lord has done this for me,” she said. “In these days he has shown his favor and taken away my disgrace among the people.”
How can I be sure of this? I am always flabbergasted whenever I read this. How is it possible that a man of Zachariah’s stature, a priest of God, could ask such a question? It is not as if he didn’t know that he was speaking to an angel; verse 12 says clearly that he was gripped with fear. He was gripped with fear because he did not know whether the angel was there to strike him down or not. But he certainly knew that the person standing next to the altar of incense was an angel. So how is it, knowing that he was speaking to an angel, that Zachariah could still doubt the message that the angel was giving him?
The truth though is is that we are very much the same like Zachariah. We look at our surroundings and our circumstances and they do not measure up to what God has called us to do, to fulfil. We do this with every area of our lives. We doubt that we can fight temptation, yet we’re told that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. We doubt that we can achieve the vision that God has placed on our hearts because we feel that we lack some internal character, talent or ability that we think we need in order to achieve it, forgetting that in our weaknesses, God is strong. We doubt that we are saved because we fall so often and cannot believe that God’s grace is sufficient enough. We doubt.
But we need not doubt. More so us than Zachariah. You see, where Zachariah had an angel of the Lord deliver a message to him, we have the Holy Spirit of God – God Himself – dwelling within us who speaks to us. It is God Himself speaking to us directly when we pray to Him, not a messenger, an angel.
Don’t doubt but believe.
Don’t look at your circumstances but believe.
Don’t look at yourself but believe.
When Zachariah asked, “how can I be sure”, he was in fact asking for a sign. But we today must not ask for sign. Rather, we must say, “Lord, help me in my unbelief”. And when we believe and pursue the vision, the calling, God will show Himself faithful. Maybe it will not be in the manner or form that you anticipated it to be, but it will be fulfilled. Just believe.
my name is darryl
and this is what i have to say