Surely I’m not the only one…
Have you ever asked God for a sign? Maybe to prove He exists or that He actually loves you.
Or maybe you believe but just needed some guidance or help out of a tough situation.
Whatever the reason, this is a common request from the people of God and there are at least 4 reasons we don’t need that which we often think we need most.
1. You’ll just need another sign…and another…and another…
In the book of Exodus, the people of God were delivered from slavery and oppression under the corrupt hand of Pharaoh. As the people of God began to walk in freedom, they realized how unfamiliar it was because of how used they had become to their past state of slavery.
Over the course of their wandering journey, they quickly lost faith…in God and in their leader, Moses, who God appointed.
Over and over again, God showed up in miraculous ways that these people saw with their own eyes.
- They saw God keep His promise to bring 10 plagues against Egypt as long as His people were enslaved.
- They saw God miraculously save His people once the Egyptians tried to chase them down.
- They saw God provide bread each morning and meat each evening for them to eat.
- They saw God guide them by a pillar of fire at night and a pillar of cloud in the morning,
Even though they saw these incredible signs, signs that if we were honest we would love to see, they still doubted.
It’s easy for us to forget that even in 2016, we are the forgetful people of God.
We were delivered from slavery to sin and shame and as we began to walk in freedom, we realized how unfamiliar it was because of how accustomed we had become to our past state of slavery to sin.
2. You have the Bible.
Let’s say you did receive a sign from God, for the sake of argument. The Bible is the benchmark by which you would discern if that sign actually came from God, anyway. Consider this: how often have you, or someone you know, received a sign that didn’t confirm what they really wanted anyway. Far too often we ask God for signs and then “name and claim” anything that furthers our pre-existing confirmation bias.
Why not just stick to the sufficient revelation of God in the Scriptures? See: Bibles and Newspapers
Don’t ask God for a sign when you don’t read the one you have.
3. Hope that is seen is not real hope.
“Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?” – Romans 8:24
I love my iPhone. It’s remarkable how simple the design is for such an incredibly complex tool. From what I understand, they’re quite easy to take apart, with just a few parts making up the whole. If you desired, you could take an iPhone apart and examine the pieces from every angle and then put it back together again, deciding to love it because now you fully understand it.
But that’s not why I love my iPhone. I love it because I can book a vacation and fire off 3 baseball-related tweets nobody cares about all before the stoplight turns green. I love it because I’ve experienced it.
The 11th century theologian, Anselm, famously defined life with Jesus as “faith seeking understanding.”
Faith is not something you understand fully before you experience it. You have a genuine encounter with Jesus which gives you hope, then you spend the rest of your life seeking to fully understand that hope, a hope which is unseen. Some mis-categorize that as “blind faith” but the Bible points us to real hope, hope unseen.
4. Jesus is the only sign you need.
In Matthew 12, a group of people demand a sign from Jesus.
First off, anytime you see people demanding things from the only One who has the power to demand things…red flag.
But he answered them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. – Matthew 12:39-40
You don’t need a sign from Jesus because Jesus is the only sign you need.
At the cross, we’re reminded who God is, what He’s done for us, and who we are in Him.
That’s always enough.