DATE WRITTEN: Sunday, 2020-10-11
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
BIBLE REFERENCE: Ezekiel 20:18-21
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)
BIBLE TEXT: 18 So I warned the children not to act like their parents or follow their evil ways or worship their idols. 19 I reminded them that I was the Lord their God and that they should obey my laws and teachings. 20 I told them to respect my Sabbath to show that they were my people and that I was the Lord their God. 21 But the children also rebelled against me. They refused to obey my laws and teachings, and they treated the Sabbath as any other day.
OBSERVATION: Sick people run to the hospital for help, but does sin-sick people always run to God for help? National catastrophes and earth shattering acts of God normally gets the attention of most people, and they may, if only for a short while, look inward to evaluate their life and compare it to what God may desire of them. Praise God, I believe that every living person knows that there is a God who they can run to in times of trouble. But He’s not a robot, so how do you suppose He will respond to you? Let’s examine this.
APPLICATION: Praise God that when nothing in life seems to be going right for us, our eyes are suddenly opened and we tend to seek out the only One with all of the answers – we turn to God, or at least to the church? The Israelites were exactly the same, for they went to Ezekiel after seeing many of their relatives taken away into exile. They just knew that Ezekiel’s God would have an answer for them. However, let’s assume that there is a family that you sacrificed to help over the years, but they never showed any appreciation, nor seemed to have risen above their issues. Now think for a moment what you would do if their children are standing before you seeking help. What do you suppose you would do? Yes, you might be one of the righteous ones in the community and known for your godly influence, but will you simply sit with this new generation and open up your checkbook? I believe that God’s heart was broken over the way that the freed Israelites acted in the desert after He had miraculously gotten them out of Egypt, and after tenderly taking care of their every need in the Wilderness. They persisted in their idol worship, right in the face of the God who was meeting their needs. So when the next generation came to God for help, He immediately aligned their actions, their habits and their misaligned priorities with those of their ancestors. I would encourage you to particularly read verses 29 thru 31 and look for the times that God referred to ‘you/yourselves’, for He was sure that they were following in the footsteps of their fathers. So God got my attention on this by making me think about how those who are, or will, follow in my footsteps, might be doing. If it depends on the example that I set for them, might God be pleased with them and listen to their plea for help? I know, we have no control over how our offspring will act and react, but perhaps we should look at this like Paul gave in one of his examples when he said something along these lines, ‘as far as it depends on me, may the world follow Christ as I endeavor to do, with His help, every day’. So although this Scripture was all about God’s response to the offspring, it was only because of the way that the ancestors lived. Let me encourage you to live each day in light of an eternity with God in heaven, and also knowing that others are following in your footsteps and your example. Are you leading them down a path that leads to heaven?
PRAYER: Our greatest aim is to live our lives as an example to all You have taught us, demonstrated for us, and commanded of us. That’s a tall order precious Lord, but with our hand in Your’s we are confident that You will lead us aright. Please give us boldness to live each day in line with Your teachings oh God, so that others will not be confused about whose we are., or about what You have commanded from us. It will be glorious for us to one day stand before You and hear the words ‘Well done gone and faithful servant’, but to also hear someone praise You for working through my life here on earth, will be reason for endless eternal praise to You, oh King. Please use Your servant to minister to others that I come into contact with. May Your work be accomplished through my words and in my actions. Please prompt my readers to do the same as they hear from You in today’s lesson. 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. 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 you be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!