They returned to their country by another route. Matthew 2:12
While driving us to an unfamiliar location, my husband noticed that the GPS directions suddenly seemed wrong. After entering a reliable four-lane highway, we were advised to exit and travel along a one-lane “frontage” road running parallel to us. “I’ll just trust it,” Dan said, despite seeing no delays. After about ten miles, however, the traffic on the highway next to us slowed to a near standstill. The trouble? Major construction. And the frontage road? With little traffic, it provided a clear path to our destination. “I couldn’t see ahead,” Dan said, “but the GPS could.” Or, as we agreed, “just like God can.”
Knowing what was ahead, God in a dream gave a similar change in directions to the wise men who’d come from the east to worship Jesus, “born king of the Jews” (Matthew 2:2). King Herod, disturbed by the news of a “rival” king, lied to the magi, sending them to Bethlehem, saying: “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him” (v. 8). Warned in a dream “not to go back to Herod,” however, “they returned to their country by another route” (v. 12).
God will guide our steps too. As we travel life’s highways, we can trust that He sees ahead and remain confident that “he will make [our] paths straight” as we submit to His directions (Proverbs 3:6).
When has God presented you with a change in your life’s direction? As you trusted Him, what was the outcome?
I can’t see the road ahead, God, as You can. Please give me discernment to know when a change in direction is coming from You.
In the New Testament, dreams are found only in Matthew. The first five revolve around the divine care and protection of baby Jesus (chs. 1–2). The other was given to Pilate’s wife (27:19).
During the time of the biblical patriarchs, however, God often spoke through dreams. In the first recorded dream, God appeared to King Abimelek. After Abraham lied to the king, Abimelek took Sarah into his harem (Genesis 20:1–7), but God intervened and prevented the king from touching her and endangering His covenant with Abraham. God used dreams in the Old Testament to protect His servants (above), to reveal Himself in a special way (28:12), to provide guidance (31:10–13), to forewarn about future events (37:5–20), and to predict the history of nations (chs. 40–41). Others who had dreams (or visions) included Daniel (see Daniel 2, 7–12) and Solomon (1 Kings 3).