Christian Devotions

Posts tagged ‘Eve’

A Righteous King

Now it came to pass in the third year of Hoshea son of Elah king of Israel, that Hezekiah the son of Ahaz king of Judah began to reign.

Twenty and five years old was he when he began to reign; and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name also was Abi, the daughter of Zachariah.

And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord, according to all that David his father did.

He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan.

He trusted in the Lord God of Israel; so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him.

For he clave to the Lord, and departed not from following him, but kept his commandments, which the Lord commanded Moses.

And the Lord was with him; and he prospered whithersoever he went forth: and he rebelled against the king of Assyria, and served him not. ~~ II Kings 18:1-7 (KJV)

After all the prophecies of doom and gloom, both against the children of Israel and against their enemies, we have a moment’s respite.

Hezekiah, king of Judah, trusted the Lord and did what was right in His eyes. He removed the high places of worship to idols and cut down the Asherah poles. He took anything that could have been called an idol and destroyed it. And the Lord prospered all that he did.

In the middle of all the corruption and evil, one king brought Judah back to the worship of the true God. There are consequences for righteousness as well as consequences for sin.

The consequences of Hezekiah’s faithfulness are just what you would expect. Everything he undertook was successful.

God has given us a blueprint for success and prosperity. He handed it to Moses on Mount Sinai. We are not able to follow that blueprint precisely because we are a fallen people, but God has even given us His Son to cover our shortcomings. God looks at our hearts, not just our actions.

Because we are children of Adam and Eve, we will never be able to keep the law completely. But that shouldn’t keep us from striving to keep it all. Nor should it give us an excuse for not trying.

If we are faithful to Him, God will prosper the work of our hands. That doesn’t mean we will all be millionaires. It does mean that our efforts will be rewarded in one fashion or another.

That reward, however, should not be our goal. Our goal is complete fidelity to the Lord. We may fall short, but we can always pick ourselves up and start again. The more we seek to follow, the better we will get at it.

Father, God,

Save us from being deluded by the lures of this world. Keep us faithful, single-minded on serving You alone.

In Jesus’ most precious name.
Amen.

Advertisements

How Do You Know?

Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. 

~~ Genesis 3:1-5 (KJV)

Judging, discriminating and discerning are words that sometimes get a bad rap in our politically correct society. They can be used to describe either positive or negative aspects of character.

I don’t think they had that problem in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve walked with God in the cool of the evening. They communicated directly, face to face. God told them what they needed to know. They didn’t have to puzzle it out for themselves.

Evidently that wasn’t enough. The enemy slithered up beside Eve and began to question her. “Did God say…?” But that isn’t the most egregious thing he said. In the next breath, he called God a liar. “You won’t die. You will be as smart as God.”

Wisdom and knowledge are not bad in themselves. They are qualities to sought and cultivated. However, the idea that one can be as wise as God is fallacious. God is infinite. There is no end, no beginning. He is the always in our universe. He has been here, will forever be here, unchanging, immutable, permanent, eternal.

When we listen to the voices around us, we can be drawn away from God’s purposes for our lives. God did not intend the serpent to tempt Eve, but He knew it would happen. And He had already decided upon the outcome. Before the serpent posed the question, He had decided to send Jesus as redeemer to a fallen world.

When we want to know, we need a double dose of discernment – the ability to separate the true from the false, the wise from the foolish.   Dr. David Sills from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary has a wise word for those who would know the will of God.

We have one other advantage

But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. ~~ John14:26 (KJV)

The Holy Spirit is our ace in the hole. If we learn to hear His voice, we will not fall for the partial truths of the enemy.

Father, God,

Help us to learn the voice of Your Holy Spirit. Keep us from error as we seek Your truth for our lives. Grant us the will and the perseverance to seek Your face first and foremost.

In Jesus’ most precious name,

Amen.

A Righteous King In Judah

Focus verses: II Kings 18:1-7

After all the prophecies of doom and gloom, both against the children of Israel and against their enemies, we have a moment’s respite.

Hezekiah, king of Judah, trusted the Lord and did what was right in His eyes. He removed the high places of worship to idols and cut down the Asherah poles. He took anything that could have been called an idol and destroyed it. And the Lord prospered all that he did.

In the middle of all the corruption and evil, one king brought Judah back to the worship of the true God. There are consequences for righteousness as well as consequences for sin.

The consequences of Hezekiah’s faithfulness are just what you would expect. Everything he undertook was successful.

God has given us a blueprint for success and prosperity. He handed it to Moses on Mount Sinai. We are not able to follow that blueprint precisely because we are a fallen people, but God has even given us His Son to cover our shortcomings. God looks at our hearts, not just our actions.

Because we are children of Adam and Eve, we will never be able to keep the law completely. But that shouldn’t keep us from striving to keep it all. Nor should it give us an excuse for not trying.

If we are faithful to Him, God will prosper the work of our hands. That doesn’t mean we will all be millionaires. It does mean that our efforts will be rewarded in one fashion or another.

That reward, however, should not be our goal. Our goal is complete fidelity to the Lord. We may fall short, but we can always pick ourselves up and start again. The more we seek to follow, the better we will get at it.

Father, God,

Save us from being deluded by the lures of this world. Keep us faithful, single-minded on serving You alone.

In Jesus’ most precious name.
Amen.