Monday, May 4, 2020

2 Kings 1, and me being a broken record

2 Kings 1 tells the account of Elijah's last message to Ahab's family and how his sons never learned the lessons taught them much to their judgment.

His son Ahaziah is now king, and he falls through the lattice in his house and gets maimed.  He decides to send messengers to the god of Ekron to see if he will recover.  Elijah intercepts them and says, "Is it because there is no God in Israel that you are going off to consult Baal-Zebub the god of Ekron?"  Because they still flagrantly act like there is no god and go off to find someone who will give them a quick answer, king Ahaziah is going to die.

When the messengers come back to the king, he asks them to describe the man.  He knows immediately that it is Elijah.  He sends fifty men to kill him, but Elijah calls down fire that consumes them.  After the third set of fifty man, the leader trembles before Elijah in repentance.  Elijah comes with them, tells the king the same thing, and later on the king dies.  His brother Jotham takes the throne, and I assume in the later accounts of Elisha, that he is the king mentioned.

After years and years of prophets, God sent Jesus to be the last true prophet.  Hebrews 1:1-2, "In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe."  After Jesus ascended back in to heaven, his apostles finished up his message as they built the church, and then they died.  Then John, the last apostle, wrote Revelation.  At the end in 22:18-19 he says, "I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll.  And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll."

It is amazing how people to this day, sometimes myself included, look outside of God's word for quick answers to their problems.  We look to people who claim to speak the very words of Jesus or popular novels that portray God in ways more comfortable to the reader.  But let me tell you, God could not have done more to reach down to our level than sending Jesus as a man.  And he has told us everything we need to know for life and salvation in the Bible.  If you have have a question that only God can answer, you need to read the Bible.  He will come back to you when the time is right.  He speaks through the Bible and he often uses other people who also read the Bible to speak through you.  But if he speaks through them, they will probably not tell you that they are giving you the very words of Jesus.  For example, I'm pretty sure God is leading me away from CCS to who knows where, but I'm not going to tell you that God told me that.  And who knows, I may be back with bells and whistles in August.  But if the Bible does not forbid or command something, then I'm free to make my own decision.  Though in my example, I'm basing my conviction based on my own hurts, habits, and hangups and my desire to please God with who I am and to not be in a toxic environment.

Even so, I need to stay in the Bible for my daily bread and my daily steps to take.  I can't go off and consult a horoscope or take a personality test.  And I certainly can't base my decisions on strong feelings that won't go away.  I need to stay in the Word and possibly consult people that I trust who also stay in the Word to pray with me and give me advice.  And that's pretty much why if you tell me God told you to do something, I won't call you a liar, but I will seriously question whether he told you that or not and see if you are mistaken.

There is a God, and he does speak.  He's spoken through his Son and he continues to speak through his Spirit flowing through the living Word.  Rely on that and nobody else.

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