DATE POSTED Tuesday, 2021-10-12
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
SCRIPTURE FROM: 1 Samuel 3:11-13
TRANSLATION: New Living Translation (NLT)
BIBLE TEXT: 11 Then the Lord said to Samuel, “I am about to do a shocking thing in Israel. 12 I am going to carry out all my threats against Eli and his family, from beginning to end. 13 I have warned him that judgment is coming upon his family forever, because his sons are blaspheming God and he hasn’t disciplined them.
APPLICATION: I am troubled at times by the freedoms some feel as a child of the King. I am OK in knowing that, for those who are justified by faith, no one can snatch them from the Father’s hand. However, as a child held close to God’s bosom, and having the Holy Spirit residing inside of us, I feel constrained, and I respect my Father way too much, to turn my head and continue doing the things of the world, because I am ‘free’. God made it very clear to Eli, the High Priest, that He was unhappy with the sins being committed at the temple by his two sons Hophni and Phinehas, and that there would be severe action if they continued in their sin. I’m not sure if Eli chose to ignore the threat from God because of his position at the temple, or if Eli may have felt like surely God would not bring harm to His very own servants in the temple, but at the point of our Scripture today, God was issuing one last warning to Eli. Having worked in church leadership for many years, this story triggered deep reminders of being challenged with church members and/or church leaders at various times. I believe it is a sobering thought to imagine that church leaders today have to deal with issues of the ‘Eli’s’ of this world today. No matter how neat and proper some churches appear, we must remember that wherever mere men are involved in leadership, there is a chance of Satan easing his way in through the hearts of men that may have relaxed in their walk with the Lord. However, I believe that one of the great things that we could appreciate about the Bible is that it is very ‘black and white’, without shades of grey to confuse what God intended. If God had declared that the Jews would be treated differently to the Gentiles, or if one nationality is exempt from His commands, then that would leave room for confusion or for men to interpret the Book in a way pleasing to their own viewpoint. The very important news of the gospel is that man is invited to participate in the goodness of God in salvation and eternal life, period, and without exception. However the challenging part of the Scripture is that when man becomes defiant and sticks his heel in the sand for what he will or will not do, the Bible tells us that God will treat them just like He did with Eli and his two sons. They are not allowed in the kingdom, and they may not live to enjoy a long life here on earth, period, and no exception to whose son or daughter you are, or how much money you have in the bank, or if you gave generously to the church. Jesus came to earth to save sinners, as God ordained that sin will not enter heaven. Yes, there is a place for sinners, but we must all know and be reminded today that their eternal destination is Hell, where they will be tormented and mistreated for all eternity. Hophni and Phinehas were obligated to represent God in His temple, but they chose to live their old sinful lifestyle. Eli had an opportunity to correct his sons, or expel them from service at the temple. They all were dealt with severely, and so will you if you continue to live without Christ. The choice is yours dear one. Let me encourage you to accept Jesus as your personal Savior and stand ready to enjoy the joys of heaven for all eternity with Jesus and the Father. Please read my Footnote for helpful tips on how to become a Christian. Of course, you are also encouraged to meet with a local Bible-teaching pastor or teacher, or email me as well. I want to see each reader in Heaven as together we worship our King. Please don’t disappoint me.
BLESSING(S) NOTED: Eli and his sons had a choice, and so do we have a choice today. With Christ as our Savior we can live eternally in heaven. Without Him, Hell is the only other alternative. Choose life my friends!
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, thank You for the precious gift of salvation – an opportunity for Your children to live eternally in Heaven. Please tender the hearts of those who have stubbornly refused Your gift and opted for eternity with Satan and his demons in Hell. Please help Your children to stay in the Book, Your precious Word, so that we may follow Your teachings and obey Your commands that You put in place so that we may live aright. For those who acknowledge Jesus as Lord, may we live as children of the King and follow in the footsteps of our Master each and every day, so that we may be a bright and shining light to those who need Jesus. Be glorified in and through us oh Lord. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!