Tuesday, February 17, 2015
I've been reading a lot in Kings and Chronicles lately. The stories of the disobedience of God's people and the kings that ruled them are fascinating and sad. It's strange how they would follow God and things would go well with them. Then a bad king would come into power and rule without integrity, leading the people into idolatry and rebellion, and God would give them over to their sin and as a result He would often let them fall to ruin. Then afterward, a godly king would lead the survivors back to God and He would restore them. Over and over this happens. Sin, rebellion, destruction and death, repentance, forgiveness and restoration of the remnant few who were preserved from God's wrath because of their surrender, humility and obedience...over and over again.
The children of Abraham all identified as God's people. They all laid claim to being chosen, yet very few of the people of Israel or Judah actually loved God and worshipped Him. Only the remnant few would remain faithful and pure in their faith and observance of God's ways. When His people would live in such a way as to bring dishonor upon His name, God's anger burned and He would swiftly purge the nation of those who were rebellious. His name, for all it's power and fame, was often subjected to mockery and ridicule among the nations because of the behavior and unfaithfulness of God's people. And God took that very seriously.
I read these accounts and I tremble! I wonder if people who call themselves Christians, but live their lives in drunkenness and rebellion consider that God's name is still to this day sacred. I wonder if they consider their sin AFTER Sunday morning, when they are done singing and bowing their heads to pray with the rest of the congregation. I wonder if they know that God is still not open to being mocked by the behavior of those who align themselves with His name. Like the children of Abraham, many people today call themselves children of God, yet they are completely and totally given over to drunkenness, carousing, dishonesty and rebellion if the opportunity arises. Some merely participate, others facilitate and participate. But like the children of Abraham who lived in rebellion to God in biblical times, those who live in rebellion to God today will not be shown mercy unless they repent (stop their participation and facilitation of sin).
"But what about Jesus?", you say. Drunkards can bank on Jesus. Jesus really can save a drunkard. He can save the sexually immoral, the glutton, the adulterer, the thief, the liar the murderer....Jesus can save anyone! But He will not save the unrepentant. That's as simple as it gets. The remnant few today are those who are repentant just the same as the remnant few of yesteryear were the repentant ones in those days.
Out of one side of their mouths some people praise God on Sunday, expressing love to Him. And out of the other side of their mouths (any other given day) they speak about hateful, lustful nasty things. Their mouths are filled with filth and lies and half truths (which is the same as a lie). And they readily spew condemnation for those they hate. Even the sound of their laughter is reserved for the crude, rude, provocative and coarse things of life, or the mockery of others. Those who sing to Jesus on Sunday and run to Satan with their lust and thirst the rest of the week are not going to be named among the righteous. Shocking right? Are you thinking, "How judgmental"? Hate me if you like. Accuse me of being judgmental if that's how you comfort yourself. But the plain simple truth is this; God does not save those who will not repent. So go ahead and talk about Jesus to all the people you seek to impress. But the next time you allow yourself the worldly pleasure of getting stoned or drunk, or having sex outside of a marriage that Jesus himself would attend, you can go ahead and let reality smack you in the face. You are not repentant. And if you are trying to bear the name of Christ while you live like that, you better wise up and realize that the holiness of God's name STILL matters to Him. And for those of you who DO belong to God, who continually affirm the salvation of these unrepentant ones, you had better rethink your role. NO ONE gets to rewrite the rules God Himself has put in place. Not even if you think your motives are rooted in "love".