The saddest story in the bible…..


The Israelites did secretly against the Lord their God

things not right.

They built for themselves high places in all their towns,

from [lonely] watchtower to [populous] fortified city.

2 Kings 17;9

 

I read this passage and I was saddened as I read it hence

the title. These were God’ s people for crying out loud.

The things they saw…..

The things they heard….

 

How could they have lost all that?

They had great leaders: Moses, Joshua, the Judges, Samuel,

King David, King Solomon…..

Yet they fell, and fell in a huge way.

Let us read more:

 

They set up for themselves pillars and Asherim [symbols

of the goddess Asherah] on every high hill and under every

green tree.

There they burned incense on all the high places, as did the

nations whom the Lord carried away before them; and they

did wicked things provoking the Lord to anger.

And they served idols, of which the Lord had said,

You shall not do this thing.  2 Kings 17:10-12

 

The Israelites saw God’s glory.

They saw and experienced His goodness.

They witnessed His power when He drove the enemy

out for them.

They experienced His faithfulness……

 

They despised and rejected His statutes and His

covenant which He had made with their fathers and

His warnings to them, and they followed vanity (false

gods – falsehood, emptiness, and futility) and [they

themselves and their prayers] became false (empty

and futile). They went after the heathen round about

them, of whom the Lord had charged them that they

should not do as they did.   2 Kings 17:15

 

They despised and rejected the Lord. They refused

to believe in God and yet they still prayed to Him!!!

That blows my mind.

I can’t believe how deep they fell, how far they went.

But this is a warning to us. As I read this I realized

that could be me……!!! It’s a scary thought. A friend

told me one time that, we are a step away from anything.

We are a step away from sin, a step away from grace. No

one is exempt from the power of temptation. Just one

wrong decision and all is lost. We need the grace of God

to help us indeed.

The word says, “The Israelites did secretly against the Lord

their God things not right.”

 

The secret things need to be dealt with. The secret thoughts,

the secret habits, the secret addictions……we need to confront

them head on. Our heart belongs to God. Let us not allow the enemy

to steal it. Our brothers and sisters fell and our job is to not say,

“how could you” but we are to look at their lives and learn. We are

to look at their lives and fall down on our knees and cry out to God

to save us from ourselves.

We are to plead with Him with tears and a broken heart realizing we

cannot do this alone……

 

The true you shows up when you are alone. When you are

alone what kind of thoughts consume you?

What kind of programs do you watch?

How do you speak when no one is watching?

What kind of habits do you have when you are alone?

 

The Israelites rejected God in their hearts

In their hearts they refused His commandments

 

There is hope for us. There is always hope!

Let us open our hearts before God.

Let us allow Him access to every part of our

hearts.

No part should be off limits to Him.

Nothing should remain in the dark.

No doors should be closed to Him.

We need to be totally open for Him to come!

Amen

 

Rolain

 

 

 

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Scars of Loss.


If we are to experience God’s best there is a price to pay. This was so clear to me as I was reading Bob Sorge’s book on prayer. Are you prepared to pay the price, because there is a price?
The enemy has come and taken things, he has come and plundered our stuff but there will be restitution. He will pay for all he has done but there is a price.
I have been deeply challenged by the words I have read. This is what he had to say:

There is a steep price to pay if we are to experience restitution.
What does qualifying for restitution mean?
And even though there is restitution, the reality of the actual loss is a scar that marks us forever.

Take, for starters, Job.

The indelible mark left upon Job because of the loss of his first set of ten children. Yes, he was changed, healed, restored, and given a second set of children. But nothing could erase the fact that he had lost his first children. They were gone forever, and their absence represented a hole in his heart that nothing could fill. This left an eternal scar on Job’s soul“.

And the Lord turned the captivity of Job and restored his fortunes, when he prayed for his friends; also the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before.  Job 41:10
We read Job’s story with no clue at the cost he had to pay for restitution. He lost his kids. All his kids. It didn’t mean just because God blessed him with more kids he forgot about the pain and the tragedy of losing his first ten kids. On the contrary the pain of losing his children would forever be with him.

–  Paul is another example of this. Paul was a mighty man of God who God delivered. At the end of his life Paul testifies of God’s faithfulness by saying,

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
2 Timothy 4:7

Paul faced impossible opposition! It was not an easy road. For Paul to say what he said, had such a weight and significance. He didn’t just leisurely get there. He nearly died and was actually prepared to die for Christ. His deliverance and glory came at a huge cost. Consider this:

2 Corinthians 11:23-30

23 Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.

24 Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.

25 Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;

26 In journeying’s often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;

27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

28 Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.

29 Who is weak, and I am not weak? who is offended, and I burn not?

As you can see, Paul suffered a lot.

The last person I would like to point out from the book is Naomi. The author says:

Naomi was comforted with Obed’s death, but she never got her husband and two sons back.
Ruth 4:17-22

We like happy endings but we need to realize like Job Naomi lost her family!
She was happy that she had a grandson but the fact remains, she lost her family and she had to live with that truth everyday of her life! She paid a huge price.

What I would like you to see through all of this is, what you have gone through, what you going through is not all for nothing! It is for a testimony! I would like you to start seeing your scars differently. Your scars are a reminder of what happened to you but they are also a testimony of God’s faithfulness. Let me give you one last practical example of what I mean.
I was abused as a child. My dad was a violent man and a drinker. I lived most of my childhood in fear then in shame and insecurity. I was abused physically and verbally. I have scars to prove it. Today, I can look at those scars and hate my dad but I don’t. I look at those scars and they remind me of how God saved me! I have come a long way because of God! The scars are a testimony of God’s faithfulness, do you understand? Look at Jesus, His nails bare the mark of what He paid on the cross. It is a reminder to us of how much He loved us. His scars are a testimony!

The author goes on to say, The point is: The losses are real, and the scars eternal. And yet, the suffering is worth it because of the glory which is revealed in us.

And I will stop there. God is so good. I hope you will look at your scars differently. There is a price to pay to experience God’s restitution.

Rolain