Acts 17:1-3 Paul and Silas then traveled through the towns of Amphipolis and Apollonia and came to Thessalonica, where there was a Jewish synagogue. 2 As was Paul’s custom, he went to the synagogue service, and for three Sabbaths in a row he used the Scriptures to reason with the people. 3 He explained the prophecies and proved that the Messiah must suffer and rise from the dead. He said, “This Jesus I’m telling you about is the Messiah.”
So here’s Paul evangelizing to people that were already familiar with the Old Testament Scriptures. You know this because he’s using those scriptures to reason with them. But let’s just think about that for a moment: how can you know the scriptures as these people do and not know God? Ie, how could they know the Old Testament and yet still ‘miss’ the fact that Jesus was the Son of God?
Well here’s how, simply ask the question: “what is the thing that Paul had to convince them of?”
You get your answer in verse 3: “He explained the prophecies and proved that the Messiah must suffer and rise from the dead.”
They missed the messiah because they had no concept that he would need to suffer and rise again. Why? Because they were expecting a great military hero to save them from the Roman empire.
Ok, fine then what’s the takeaway?
This: people ‘miss’ God when they adapt their view of God to their preferred reality, rather than adapt their view of reality to the biblical view of God.
That’s the lesson, it is possible to miss God’s mercy, miss God’s movement, miss his anointing, miss what he’s doing among us all because we’re adapting our view of God to our preferred reality rather than letting our preferred reality be determined by God.
That is why we must never fall to the trap of making the biblical story about us and our problems but rather let it be about God and his glory.
How does it go again? The fear of the Lord is the beginning of……wisdom. Prov 1:7.
Of course it is, because if it’s all about us, we’ll have the powers of perception similar to that of 30 year old concrete.
Pursue the Biblical knowledge of God, get wisdom thrown in for free.