But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law so that he could adopt us as his very own children.
— Galatians 4:4–5 NLT
It blows my mind that Jesus fulfilled over 300 prophesies. Mathematically speaking, the odds of anyone fulfilling this amount of prophecy are staggering. Mathematicians put it this way:
- The odds of one person fulfilling just eight prophecies: 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000
- The odds of one person fulfilling 48 prophecies: 1 in 10157
- The odds of one person fulfilling more than 300 prophecies: only Jesus! (CBN.com)
And at the perfect time, Jesus came into the world. And it didn’t matter that religious leaders devoted their lives to studying this very thing. It didn’t matter that many knew these prophecies by heart. It didn’t even matter that they longed for the coming of the Messiah, because when he was there in the flesh, at just the right time, they missed it!
It blows my mind!
In John chapter 8 we see a very heated confrontation between Jesus and the religious leaders:
Jesus told them, “If God were your Father, you would love me because I have come to you from God. I am not here on my own, but he sent me. Why can’t you understand what I am saying? It’s because you can’t even hear me!”
— John 8:42–43 NLT
How could they miss it?! I’ve struggled with this question almost my entire life. The simple answer is that they missed the Messiah because he wasn’t what they were expecting. It didn’t matter how many prophesies he fulfilled, how many miracles they saw. He didn’t look or act the way they wanted him to, so they rejected him.
It’s easy for us to look back and say, “Ya’ll are so dumb.” Hindsight is 20/20, after all. But the truth is that we reject God all the time, and for the same reason.
Sometimes we pray for God to bless us in our careers and finances, and we reject his gifts because, instead of looking like money, it looks like hard work. We pray for God to heal our relationships, and he provides a way, but we reject it because it looks like us changing instead of our spouse. We pray for healing, and God gives us death. We pray for children, and God gives us fosters. We pray for peace, and God gives us friends.
Often, God’s promises to be faithful aren’t what we expect. Please don’t reject the gifts that God has given you just because of they aren’t what you expected. Instead, ask God to open your eyes, so you don’t miss them. And above all, learn to be grateful.