Mark Turner, the Pastor of Family Ministries at Nansemond River Baptist Church, had the opportunity to address the students, faculty and staff of GCA during their weekly chapel service. Pastor Turner spoke of the unexpected nature of Jesus Christ, both through His genealogy and in the events leading to His peculiar birth. Basing his message in context, he taught about the people of Israel having had very specific expectations, based on Scripture as well as their own perceptions, concerning the coming of the Messiah. Pastor Turner went on to speak of three unexpected ways which prove to us the wisdom and sovereignty of God, the first of these being the unexpected lineage of Christ. At the beginning of the New Testament, Matthew takes the time to highlight the lineage of the Messiah in order to prove the point that the very people God used to bring Christ into the world were the same people that Jesus came to save. Secondly, God called Mary and Joseph, the most unexpected pair, to conceive the Savior of the world. And finally, as God’s people kept failing to earn their way to Him, God took it upon Himself to send His own Son down to them so that they might be saved. Pastor Turner tied these unexpected events together, proclaiming that all Christians should allow their expectations to be founded on and molded by God’s sovereign plan because what Christians see as unexpected, God has had planned all along.

Key Passages: Matthew 1:1-25