Matthew 11 … Consider Him, the Expected One

“Now when John, while imprisoned, heard of the works of Christ, he sent word by his disciples and said to Him, ‘Are You the Expected One, or shall we look for someone else?'” (11:2-3).

John the Baptist, the forerunner of the Messiah was confirmed by Jesus as He said, “This is the one about whom it is written, ‘Behold, I send My messenger ahead of You, Who will prepare Your way before You,'” (11:10) .

John the Baptist, the forerunner prophesied of in Scripture, is now left wondering if Jesus is truly, after all, the Expected One. It is safe to assume John was not expecting that his humble, yet bold and obedient service to God would land him in jail, facing death and feeling abandoned.

Unmet and misguided expectations can wreak havoc on a thought-life. Alone, in a dark prison, awaiting his fate, clouded by thoughts of confusion, he sent his own disciples to Jesus, in desperate need of clarity.

Consider Him, the Expected One:

  • Who does not behave according to human expectations.
    • “Are You the Expected One, or shall we look for someone else?” (11:3).
  • Who challenges dashed expectations with the clarity of His Word.
    • “Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Go and report to John what you hear and see: the blind receive sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who does not take offense at Me,'” (11:4-6).
  • Who eradicates limited expectations of human wisdom with His revelation.
    • “At that time Jesus said, ‘I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and have revealed them to infants,'” (11:25).
  • Who eliminates preconceived expectations with His invitation to learn from Him. 
    • “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For My yoke is easy and My burden is light,” (11:28-30).

How do we respond to Him, the Expected One?

  • He is God; we are not. We must let go of our own expectations and by faith, trust Him Who is beyond our ability to fully explain and understand.
    • “‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
      Nor are your ways My ways,’ declares the Lord.
      9 ‘For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
      So are My ways higher than your ways
      And My thoughts than your thoughts,'”
      (Isaiah 55:8-9).
  • We live in a world riddled with injustices and evils; left to our own thought-life and expectations we can easily misunderstand His ways. It happened to John the Baptist, it can happen to us. Jesus immediately referred John back to the Scriptures to find his answer. We must find clarity and consolation in the truth of His Word.
    • “When my anxious thoughts multiply within me,
      Your consolations delight my soul,”
      (Psalm 94:19).
    • “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth,” (John 17:17).
  • We live in a world bent on destroying our faith through its so-called intellectual superiority and ridicule. We must seek His revelation over human wisdom. “Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men,” (1 Corinthians 1:25).
    • “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect,” (Romans 12:2).
    • “For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God,” (1 Corinthians 1:18).
    • “See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ,” (Colossians 2:8).
  • We live in a world determined to go its own way. In the midst of confusion and conceit, the Lord Jesus patiently extends His invitation of grace to come to Him; but there is coming a day when His invitation will cease.
    • “But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up,” (2 Peter 3:8-10).

We must accept His invitation to come; and as we come, we must invite others to learn of Him, through repentance, before it’s too late. Let us never trust our faulty, human and limited expectations that impede our ability to know and believe the truth.

Today, let us come to Jesus, to learn His wisdom and clarity through the revelation of His Word. And as we come, we can emphatically expect He will faithfully meet our expectations and give us rest from our questions and confusion as we daily learn more of Him, the Expected One.

Let’s Grow Together!

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