DATE POSTED Wednesday, 2021-09-22
WRITTEN AT: Okeechobee, FL
SCRIPTURE FROM: Judges 10:13-16
TRANSLATION: Contemporary English Version (CEV)
BIBLE TEXT: 13-14 … I’m not going to rescue you any more! You’ve left me and gone off to worship other gods. If you’re in such big trouble, go cry to them for help!
15 “We have been unfaithful,” the Israelites admitted. “If we must be punished, do it yourself, but please rescue us from the Ammonites.”
16 Then the Israelites got rid of the idols of the foreign gods, and they began worshiping only the Lord. Finally, there came a time when the Lord could no longer stand to see them suffer.
APPLICATION: I’m sure that we will quickly deflect this message to our neighbor, since we would never personally worship other gods, right? But let’s consider one thing today. Church attendance has seriously declined over the past year, and many will suggest that they are worshiping virtually with their church. But let me suggest that you look at the numbers that are missing from the pews, and then look at the number attending online. Unfortunately you will see an enormous variance. None of us would be judgmental enough to think that our friends who sat next to us in church pre-Covid actually created idols at home to worship, but we will be hard-pressed to get a straight answer from them, if we cared enough to ask, about what is really keeping them away from church. However, we serve the same God who knew without a shadow of doubt what the Israelites were doing. God told them to destroy the idols in the towns they captured, but He knew that they retained the idols for a ‘rainy day’! God loved them enough to send warnings to them, by way of foreign leaders taking over their cities and terribly abusing them. But that didn’t change their hearts. No doubt God sent awful diseases on them, much like what we are dealing with today. But that didn’t turn them back to God. However after constant badgering by the enemy, the Israelites remembered God and they just knew that He would win their battles for them. After the 911 attacks on the US, Americans flocked into churches to connect with the only One who could save our country. God comforted the hearts of His children and helped them to know that He was still on the throne. For weeks, and even months afterwards, the church celebrated the power of God. However, church attendees gradually returned to their gods who stole their hearts prior to the 911 attacks. Although several other warnings have been given to us, we have been losing family and friends left and right to our current warning that seems to be uncontrollable and taking the lives of those we love. When the Israelites finally came to their senses and asked to reunite with the God who helped them win their battles in the past, God said ‘No, try asking the gods whom you served most recently’. I know, you have no idols, or gods, in your home, or your temple, or in your community that you worship. But let me ask you to think about those things that are taking God’s place in your life. What stops you from Bible reading, or prayer, or church attendance? Can you list them so that you could be reminded of the gods that exist in your life? I strongly believe that it was not until the Israelites threw out their idols and began worshiping God Almighty, alone, that God saw their repentance and returned to their rescue. What is it that you must consider ridding yourself of, to make room for Jesus? Please make this a priority, as Jesus could return to take His church home TODAY! Be ready for His return dear friends.
BLESSING(S) NOTED: God saw the misery of His children, and He saw their efforts to return to Him. God loves us and wants our companionship more than anything!
PRAYER: Way too often we ponder the evil going on and the dreadful impact it is having on our lives, and we wonder how long will this last? Lord, I believe You may be whispering the answer in our ears: ‘Until you get the message I am sending to you about your sin, and the sin of those around you’. Oh Lord, please humble the heart of every believer, and help us to remember how You pounded on the Israelites when they turned their heads on You. Praise God You eventually came to their rescue, but it was not until they gave up their idols and their worthless gods. I believe that we might be right in the middle of a similar condition at this time. You are sending warnings over the bow and trying desperately to redirect our path to follow You. Please Lord, soften hearts again today like You did with the Israelites, so that we may come to our senses and acknowledge You as the only God who can save, and who has prepared a place already for us to join You in heaven one day soon. Help us to influence others with whom we associate with, to do the same. Lord, may Your kingdom come today, as it is in heaven. 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!