This question has been asked innumerable times when enduring an extended time of wrestling unresolved issues. The question is one born out of seeking clarity or direction as to how to deal with the issue. Sometimes it arises out of frustration with what we are facing, and wondering how can this ever turn into something good. It is a good question. While the circumstances and times may change, this question does not. Only the answer does – and that depends on who you are listening to and who you are following.
We live in a world that at times seems to have gone mad. Lawlessness is prevalent and allowed to freely express itself in our midst, as is unrestrained passion and misdirected focus. The rule of law is ignored and evil seems to be surrounding us on every front claiming the victory all around us. Feelings are largely what dominate the actions that follow those feelings, and are often the motivator for the negative and hateful reactions to opposing opinions on almost every subject. Judgementalism and anger seem to be the “rule of the day”.
And so the question still is: can any good come out of this?
In John 1:46 we find Jesus choosing the disciples that would be the first disciples to follow Him and be witnesses of His life and ministry on earth. In this chapter He is inviting them to follow Him. In the 46th verse we find Philip was the first one who came to Nathaniel immediately after Jesus had called him. When Philip told Nathaniel about his encounter with Jesus, Nathaniel’s response was definitely not one of believing what Philip said about Jesus. “And Nathaniel said unto him, Can any good thing come out of Nazareth? Philip said unto him, Come and see”.
Over 2000 years have passed since that fateful statement was made. Nathaniel did go with Philip and became both a follower of, and believer in, Jesus. And I’m sure if we could ask Nathaniel today if anything good could come out of Nazareth, he would most assuredly say YES!
What would you say today represents your Nazareth? Is it some trial you are going through; addiction you can’t seem to conquer; some yet unanswered prayer that is causing you to lose hope; a long-awaited promise still waiting to be fulfilled, etc.” Or is it watching and praying for something to change in our city, state, nation, world, government or leaders that seems to be out of control with the devil winning and mocking the very will of God for our country or world?
Did anything good come out of Nazareth? Absolutely YES! Jesus became the sacrifice for our sins. He wrought salvation, deliverance, healing, provides counseling, comfort, guidance, joy, hope, faith and unfailing, undying, unconditional love for each of us who have opened or will open to His love! He is the Shelter in the midst of the storm, the Rock of our salvation, the God who intercedes and intervenes for us and who provides for all our needs. And He is the One who has promised NEVER to leave or forsake you. So, to all I would say, “look up , for your redemption draws nigh”!
GOD IS STILL ON THE THRONE! And Jesus is reminding us today in John 16:33 “These things I have spoken to you, that you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation, but BE OF GOOD CHEER: I HAVE OVERCOME THE WORLD.” You never know what God is going to do through the circumstances and trials you have to walk through.
Resurrection came out of Nazareth! And you can be sure that the manifest evidence of God’s presence and power will come out of your “Nazareth” too! Yes, my friend, good will come out of this because God isn’t finished with you, us, or this nation and world yet.