The Old Testament ends with the prophecies of Malachi. Then for 400 years God is silent. He doesn’t speak to the Jewish Nation again until the grand announcement. He waits until the appointed time, the time he has foretold from the beginning. The birth of His Son.
But what was God doing during those 400 years? I think it’s easier to understand if we see life like a stage play. Between scenes, the curtain closes and the stage crew silently rearranges the set to prepare for the next scene. They carefully set the stage for what will come next.
Perhaps that was what God was doing too. He said all he was going to say about what was to come and then began quietly arranging history to bring everything to that magnificent moment when Jesus, the Son of God enters our world to bridge the chasm between us and God.
I think God does this in our individual lives as well. He gives us direction and then sometimes there is a painfully long period where we struggle with the fact that we know we’ve heard from God concerning a decision or a direction and then nothing seems to happen. We begin to second guess what God has said, or we get impatient and try to make things happen on our own.
If we look at the 400 years when God was preparing for the birth of Christ, we know for a fact that there was absolutely nothing Israel could have done to make anything happen. Only God was able to bring fulfillment to His promises. And isn’t it the same for us today? Can we really make any convincing argument that we can bring about His promises in our lives any more than Israel could?
All we can do is wait and keep believing that God spoke to our hearts and that He is a faithful God and will keep his promises. Actually, we are now in a period of great silence that has lasted 2000 years. God spoke through His precious Son who came in a humble stable and His people have been waiting ever since. The silence will finally be broken when Christ returns for us. What a glorious day that will be! But while we wait in the silence, we can be encouraged. 2000 years ago God closed the curtain and has been quietly preparing what comes next. We can believe His promises and trust that one day soon, He will send His Son to reign as King, just like He promised!
“For the vision is yet for the appointed time; It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; For it will certainly come, it will not delay.” – Habakkuk 2:3(NASB)
“She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” – Matthew 1:21(NASB)