Introduction and About the Text (Matthew 2:13-22)
I’m not much of a planner of sorts. I know others who are much better at planning things down to the minute detail. And we all know how little our plans actually matter at times. We all have had our plans, some small and not so important, and some big and rather important (plans to spend retirement with a spouse, plans to watch our children grow up to see an old age, plans to be healthy, plans for family, plans for job, etc.) come to mean nothing because our Lord apparently had other plans. That can be quite devastating at times which is why a text like this can be so comforting. You see, no matter our plans, our Lord reveals to us today that nothing can hinder His plan which is always for our greater good.
Our Lord had planned since the fall of Adam and Eve to send His Son into the flesh in the fullness of time. Time centers around Jesus, not us He was to be King and give His Kingdom, not of this world, to all believers in Him. A kingdom in which He gives amazing gifts of forgiveness, life and salvation.
Herod, Roman sub-King of all Judea at time, didn’t like competition. When Herod hears of the birth of this King Jesus he sends the wisemen to discover the location so that he might come to worship this king, as well – with a sword through the babies heart. God’s plan over, right? The wisemen, if for nothing but fear, would surely return back with the news. Yet, he who tried to deceive the wisemen was out-deceived by them after their hearts were turned to faith in God and His Word. No heart is too hard for our Lord. He has turned us and continues to turn us, after all. No fear, after one begins to rightly fear God above all things, will lead the wisemen to deny the Christ child. Our Lord continues to lead us through His Word to fear and love Him above all things.
Herod’s awful back-up plan was to destroy every child in the vicinity of Bethlehem under the age of 2. God’s plan ruined, right? Matthew 2: 13 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you, for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 14 And he rose and took the child and his mother by night and departed to Egypt 15 and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, “Out of Egypt I called my son.”
For our Repentance and Comfort
Nothing can ruin God’s plan. Nothing can hinder His will. This is fantastic news, because His will is crush sin, but not to crush us. His will is to join us in our weakness and suffering so that He might give us His light and grace and riches. His will is to proclaim peace to us through our Jesus and give us His joy in the midst of all our suffering. His will is to proclaim to us that, as our plans, some little and not so important, and some big and rather important, fail or succeed, that He is with us, that He guides us, that He knows the hairs on our head, and that, though we don’t know our future, we do know the hands that hold our future and we do know who holds our hands as we are led into that future. He tells us to be of good cheer, no matter what comes of our plans, because we know how much God loves us and that our treasure is our Jesus, and no plan of suffering, death or devil can take Him away or can take us away from Him.
What are we that He is mindful of us? I don’t know – but He is and He crowns us with glory and honor and places our enemies underneath our feet. Our Lord is mindful of us and our plans and gives to us peace today in proclaiming that His ultimate plans for us cannot be thwarted. He gives us amazing freedom with that truth.