“BUT GOD was fulfilling what all the prophets had declared about the Messiah beforehand – that he must suffer all these things.”
(Acts 3:18 NLT)
Someone I once knew told me that any time the word “but” is in a sentence, nothing said before the but matters.
- I love you BUT I can’t be with you.
- Your interview went really well BUT we ended up going with an inside hire.
- I really need my mom today BUT she’s in Heaven.
I argued that the pre-but still mattered even though it might not change the outcome of the post-but. The pre-but communicates gives meaning to the post-but; the post-but is only half the story! I passionately advocated for the pre-but BUT I couldn’t convince him.
I hadn’t thought about that debate for a while. Then, in my Bible reading this week, there happened to be quite a few but’s! Here was the one that really stood out the most to me:
“Friends, I realize that what you did to Jesus was done in ignorance: and the same can be said of your leaders. BUT GOD was fulfilling what all the prophets had declared about the Messiah beforehand – that he must suffer all these things.”
(Acts 3:17-18 NLT)
Peter was talking to a crowd after he healed a crippled beggar. He saw an opportunity to share the whole truth to where this power to heal comes from so he began by giving his audience some context. He explained who God is and that Jesus is the promised savior sent from God. Then, he shared that they were responsible for putting the savior of the world to death. (That had to have been a pretty intense realization, right?!) But while those words still hung in the air, we get to verses 17 and 18. Peter tells them that they were acting in ignorance BUT GOD had a plan.
- You and your friends just “accidentally” killed the Savior of the world BUT GOD’s plans are bigger than our mistakes.
Even in our most blind moments, God keeps his promises. There’s always a BUT GOD. I can’t get in the way of his grace and love.
- I’m a moron BUT GOD is the creator of wisdom and he guides me.
- I fail daily BUT GOD forgives and restores.
- I’m scared BUT GOD is bigger than even my biggest fear.
Pray: Dear Lord, I don’t know what I’d do without your buts. I’m so thankful that you know the pre-buts that get in my way and are always here to catch my butt when I fall. You are so much more powerful than my mistakes and my ignorance. I need you, God. Amen.