DECEMBER 16: IT IS SECRET

IT IS SECRET

By: Darrelyn L. Tutt

"And Manoah said unto the angel of the Lord, What is thy name, that when thy sayings come to pass we may do thee honor? And the angel of the Lord said unto him, Why askest thou thus after my name, seeing it is secret?
So Manoah took a kid with a meat offering, and offered it upon a rock unto the Lord, and the angel did wondrously; and Manoah and his wife looked on. For it came to pass, when the flame went up toward heaven from off the altar, that the angel of the Lord ascended in the flame of the altar. And Manoah and his wife looked on it and fell on their faces to the ground. But the angel of the Lord did no more appear to Manoah and his wife. Then Manoah knew that he was an angel from the Lord.
Judges 13:17-21

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Today's Read: Judges 13-16
The foreshadowing of "Samson's life" fascinates me and holds me spellbound ... as does his life.
Samson's "nameless" mom was given a surprise visit, before the conception of Samson, and told by an angel that her barren womb was going to be filled with "a deliverer" for Israel from the Philistines.
"For lo, thou shalt conceive and bear a son; and no razor shall come on his head; for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb; and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines."
Judges 13:5
She was given specific dietary instructions in order to fulfill the "Nazarite" vow which had been divinely pronounced upon her "soon to be coming" son and she was also subjected, in this way, to a private and personal encounter with God Almighty Himself.
Spectacular. Beautiful Crazy. Speechless.
A summons from heaven is no small matter and neither is a visible intersection with God.
Since I believe the Angel was Christ, I am further intrigued by this provoking account, and pay careful attention to the little details urging you to do the same.
The "nameless" wife immediately retells the angelic story to her husband, Manoah, who desires to be brought, also, into this privy exchange:
"Then Manoah intreated the Lord and said, O my Lord, let the man of God which Thou didst send come again to us, and teach us what we shall do unto the child that shall be born."
Judges 13:8
Guess what?
God answers this request, almost humorously, by returning to the nameless wife a second time ... but this time she runs and retrieves Manoah and brings him before the "Angel." Manoah is so curiously and wondrously stupified he cannot seem to get his wits and bearings about him ... and still God patiently moves on.
Manoah and his wife, together, are urged to comply with all of God's commands and in response, Manoah offers a burnt offering on a rock before the Angel.
Stand back and look out on this one.
Mmmm ....
Both the sacrifice and the Angel ascend with a wild "whoosh" into the heavenlies leaving two earthly individuals breathless, as the smell and glow of glory, smoke, and flame linger in their presence.
Oh my ... for the praise of God's glory.
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Manoah's "burning bush" moment was a "burning stone" moment that took place with a nameless angel, a nameless wife, and in an ordinary "turned extraordinary moment.
And who can know what God might choose to do in our lives?
Who can know how God might choose to reveal Himself?
Who can know when the moment is ripe and the time is right for Christ's appearing?
As sure as the Angel revealed himself to Samson's awaiting and expectant parents ... so shall He appear a "second" time to all those who await salvation and the final episode of redemption.
In this moment and in the future ...
Christ is going to reveal Himself to both the watchful and the unwatchful because He is powerfully and forcibly able to, and because He has said He is going to.
 He'll leave the scent of His glory behind,
In the glow of the flame.
Mmmm ...
Stay close to Your Redeemer;
Your redemption draweth nigh,
And so does a "special encounter" still to come.
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Three Study Suggestions:
1) Read the story and record insights.
2) Find a stone and record a glimpse of seeing the glory of God in the story called your life.
3) Light a match by the stone ... and consider the flame that fuels the fire within you.  Offer up to God a "personal and private" sacrifice of some sort, just between the two of you.
Ask Him to burn and ignite a new "hope" in you ... and to refuel you with His restorative cleansing power.