Don’t Provoke the Bear!

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He stretched out what looked like a hand and took me by the hair of my head. The Spirit lifted me up between earth and heaven and in visions of God he took me to Jerusalem, to the entrance of the north gate of the inner court, where the idol that provokes to jealousy stood. Ezekiel 8:3

Don’t poke the bear” a common saying used to warn those being careless, fearless, ignorant or foolish,about the dangers of making a bear angry. While the bear slumbers or is in hibernation or a state of peace and happiness, can project an image that mask reality. Though they might be cute, and seem harmless, even the youngest bear has enough powers to alter ones course of existence.

Time and time again, people took for granted the bears power, even thinking that it could beaten by those of us who were strong or either studied and knowledgable about his habits and behavior that they overlooked two important factors:

  • 1. Not knowing his mind
  • 2. Not understanding the his complete nature.

In this passage we encounter Gods’ prophet hosting the elders in His home. Without a word, God shows Ezekiel the conditions of those in his midst without a confession. He allows Ezekiel in these visions to see through His eyes. He peers down and immediately encounters an idol.

Fake Gods where in the house of God!!!

The idol was in the inner court, where the priest were to reside and offer up sacrifices to atone for the sins of the people. They had taken some of the gods from other cultures, and had included them in worship along with the true and living God.

God had a roommate!!!!

After all God had done for Israel and Judah, He was given a roommate, and forced to share a space with one who hadn’t any power, or the capability to love, protect and provide. They worshiped and attributed to these idols things that were given by Him. They sought them for life, protection and provision and in doing so, they provoked the bear!

I wondered to myself, “

How many temples, homes and hearts are God forced to be a roommate in?”

How often do we move God into a living condition, where he is treated like a renter, and given a lease on that which He owns? How often is God asked to entertain new tenants, leasing out space to those who don’t belong?

He shares His temple with paintings and statues, when His temple was designed to paint His image upon the people and to teach them his statutes. Sadly, I believe He sees more of the same today. While our God has upheld His covenant and remained consistent, our behavior all along has caused us to experience earthly judgement and or punishment, which to many was unbearable. Sadly, this did not lead to a correction of their actions and has not lead to the correction of ours either.

They continued down the path, in some cases unaware that the bear had been provoked. They continued in the error of their ways, and the prophets, priest and elders had not corrected it, partly because they were living in error too.

We find out via the visions of God, that the elders who sat in Ezekiel’s home has lives they lived in the dark. They committed atrocities against God in the dark in hopelessness, not believing that correcting the error of their ways would lead to God changing their circumstances.

Each Elder, God revealed to Ezekiel, had their own personal shrine in their room (Yes, the room that God provided.). After service, they went to their rooms and worshipped a god that didn’t provide. Sadly, we do the same. They served in the temple, advised the people and then gave their most intimate self to inanimate object.

Much like then, God watched the sin through eyes of love through shades of jealousy. Though He loved His people, He was and is still jealous of where we place our love and adoration.

So what is your practice?

I imagine that God knows the difficulty many of us face watching second to second updates of those we loved and lost or are envious of living out life with an insufficient replacement. How sad it must be for Him to see us chasing temporary fulfillment, while complete provision is just a prayer away.

What’s in your gateway?

Is there something preventing God from seeing and receiving your sacrifice?

What in your life is provoking Gods wrath?

#PastorJDO3

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The Lion, The Prophet & Zion

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Joel 3:16

While reading this text, I was overcome with the words or our Lord speaking through His Prophet Joel.    He writes to Him concerning His people, and I saw us, paralleling the text.  Their actions had placed them into a weakened position.  

Lion sitting in tall grass

Though designed to be lenders, they weren’t even borrowers; they were the tail and not the head, not above, but positioned as beneath.  Though bearing the name of Yahweh, the living God, they benefited not from His presence, power and provision.  Though in covenant with the Lord, their unwillingness to keep His commandments, left them out of favor with the Lord, placing them in exile from God’s gift to them, and under the authority of a Kingdom not verbally submitted to the authority of the Lord.

Waiting to hear from the Lord, Joel cries out a Word from heavens gate, the Word they had been waiting for came.  A Word of restoration.  A Word of reconciliation.  A Word of recovery.  A word of renewal.  A Word burst forth from the Man of God, notifying the Elders, and all inhabitants of the land, God is moving.  The suffering that had been experienced in the past and presence, would be a history referred to by generations to come as a reminder not just to fear the Lord, but to be obedient to His Word.  The time would be a reminder to follow His commandments, and to love and serve Him alone, while not seeking the deeds of the flesh and putting idols before him.  Though Yahweh is the one, true and living God, He is jealous of the man made gods that had captured his people, and because these gods were not living, the life of these gods were in the hearts of the people who foolishly worship that which was powerless, though in covenant with God.

God speaks to his people in the third chapter.

The Lord roars from Zion;
from Jerusalem He sounds forth His voice.
The heavens and the earth shake. 
But the Lord is a refuge for His people;
He is a stronghold for the citizens of Israel.
Joel 3:16

The Lion

I was shaken by our God, who Joel records will “roar”.  The Prophet says “The Lord roars”! propheticroar

I recalled the day, as I am sure many of you will, when you first heard the voice of the Lord.  It’s that moment when you are walking across the earth, as a wild animal through the jungle.  You wander through consuming all you can, taking advantage of every opportunity, as though every experience was designed for you.  You waddled in the lows of sin, laying flat faced in the same pit the prodigal son worked in, riding the joys of sin as one hopped up on caffeine and sugar, and slowly loosing grip as you attempt to hold on to last nights high, eventually bottoming out into a pit of remorse and regret.  Then in the quiet, as you navigated life either unaware of the presence of the Lion, or had yet to have a personal experience with the Lion, you hear the power of His roar bellowing throughout the land.

He walked into your life boldly, causing you to reshape your life, considering your ways, and not aligning them with His Kingdom rule.  Understanding that law breakers of the circle, will be exposed to suffering as well as the shame that accompanies living outside of the law.  His “roar” stems from the same place that spoke the world into existence.  He recalls in the first chapter of Genesis that he  simple spokes words, and there was, and now Joel says that this same God, filled with power, opens His mouth and “roars”.  This Lion that sat in quiet, watching the destruction of His people and His creation, reaches a breaking point and cries out from the silence! 

mangerI sense that the Lord is growing tired of watching his people broken and suffering.  He is tired of seeing us wasteful and neglectful.  He cries tears seeing His Kingdom in ruins, and His people running about without concern for righteousness.  He has been silent while people walk though His Kingdom leaning on a covenant, in which they are law breakers, depending on it to be their protection, while they experience the fruit of the evil one.   He is tired of seeing us recite the lines of the adversary; loyal to his precepts, while the Word given to grow and prosper us sits idle bye, pregnant with potential, absent of a suitor.  God is “roaring!”

The Prophet

How is He roaring?  I know many of you are listening for His audible voice.  Listen closely!  God returns to His people via a Word from His Prophet.  Joel stood flat footed in front of the people and recalled the Word of God to His people, not just reminding them of the covenant and what they could get from the covenant, but confronting them with how they ended up in their current predicament, and via the power of God’s Word which can’t return void unto Him.   Oh that God’s Prophet would continue to stand firmly for and on the Lord’s Word.  If only we could walk as a generation of servants, committed to pursue God and not worldly gains.  If only our warriors would fight the fight of faith, not shortchanging God people for coins and bills.  What type of roar would we hear?  What type of roar is coming from our pulpits?  Are they Words that make people cry out for God, or cry our to us?  Are they Words that direct people to pursue Him, or chase possessions? 

The Word shows us a pattern in the Spirit, that I want to highlight.  He says “The Lord roars from Zion”.  Who and what is Zion?  Zion is His people.  Zion are those that are submitted to His Word.  Zion are those who are committed to live out His truth and carry forth His truth into the next Generation.   God speaks His Word through His Prophet into His People, and the Word spoken will take root, and be returned unto God via His people; Zion.  

Zion

Are you ready to roar?  

Each week, hundreds and thousands of people fill the temple of God to worship God through psalm, petition Him through prayer, and be empowered through hearing His Word.  The problem is not God, or His Word!  The problem is Zion.  We have apparently stumbled upon fallow ground, allowing the bird to eat up the seeds before they take root.  The people of God lost all they had because they stopped living according to His Word, stopped confessing His truth, ceased to allow Him to order their steps, and thus found themselves in bondage.  Sound familiar?  We are favored, and suffering because we are not putting God in His rightful place.  

Tug of War

God is ready to advance His Kingdom.  He is ready to restore order to our families.  He is ready to rebuild our communities.  He is ready to prosper our businesses, but He must come first!  Zion must not only have God in their hearts through a verbal confession, but must show forth fruit from a Word that has taken route in the heart of all who have heard.  

In this, Joel continues, “from Jerusalem, he sounds fourth his voice.”  This continues the above revelation, in that God is calling for Zion to sound out.  Jerusalem is the city in which His people dwell.  It is the central place where God’s house lay.  

I saw people returning back to the house of God.  Filling the seats, not to be entertained, but to be instructed.  I see and army of thirsty people, eager to get beyond the milk and entertainment and tradition, but hungry for a relationship with the God that loved them so much, that He sacrificed for them, and kept them even while they were in bondage.  I see Him wrapping His arms around those who have offended Him, and speaking words of life into their gate.  I see His Words literally planted on the brains like seeds on rows in a field, taking root into the lives of all those who hear.   I see Zion advancing as a unit, and not many parts, as His Word not just restores mankind’s relationship with God, but with each other.  I know hear the voice of “the Lord roar from Zion,” and “from Jerusalem He sounds forth His voice.”

embersGod reaches down with His hand into the smoldering ashes of our past fire for Him, searching for an ember.  Just one ember from our past, in which He can renew and rekindle a fire.  I see Him taking His Word, verse by verse, and laying it across our heart.  With both hands, he shields the wind of the adversary attempting to blow out the growing flame.  He leans over and breaths into our lives, slowly fanning, and adding on strip after strip, until the once smoldering fire, burst forth from our mouth as a raging fire from our tongues. 

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His voice cries out from Zion, moving from His temple, flows into the streets and begins consuming all in its path.  Joel says, “The heavens and the earth shake.”    Our God and His heavenly host are stirred up, preparing themselves to enter the land, breaking forth into the earthly realm, shaking the very ground on which the people of God advance.  Our champion descend on His white horse, bearing a sword, bringing unity to between heaven and earth, laying to eternity all those who refuse to submit to the true and living God.  Everything in caught with fear and trembling, even Zion.

But Joel gives us great news, and so too do I pass it to you.  “But the Lord is a refuge for His people”  As the Lord wages war with those who have not followed Him, consuming the land and all that dwell in it, Joel reminds us that “the Lord is refuge for His people”.  His people will be saved.  Those that bare His name are spared under the covenant set with Him.  God will protect His children.

39034898 - a lightning strike on the cloudy skyI love this because there are times when we are exposed to the same conditions as the world.  It rains on the just and on the unjust.  Famine comes through the city and all its inhabitants are affected.  Floods run down the street, and house after house is consumed, “But the Lord”!   We are often consumed with the sight or fear of immanent and perceived danger, “But the Lord”!  I want to acknowledge that God is a refuge.  In my own life, I have come through many circumstances, not equal to Paul, but a personal suffering of my very own, “But the Lord”, as I am sure you have.

We have all sat on the rocking boat, afraid of today’s wind, and tomorrows looming storm.  We have all seen the clouds gathering and felt the moisture and coolness of the air as the seasons change and the storm draws near.  We have heard the whistle of the tornado and fell the pull and push against our homes and vehicles as it destroys things miles away, and gives evidence of its ability cause lay to ruin all things in its path.  And though facing destruction, we but our trust in the Lord to be our stronghold.  He tells His people not to fear because its all a part of His plan.  And while He tears down, He is also restoring and building up.  He is placing His people back into their rightful state, calling them unto Him, as they advance through the streets.

FireBlazingI look around and see the infrastructure of all built being taken apart beam by beam, brick by brick.  It seems the underground aqueducts are being exposed, and the citizens are reaching for buckets to retrieve their own resources.  The roads that give us safe travel are now being held hostage, and the benefits of being a citizen of earthly kingdoms once again parallels Rome; pay tax and live.  As we render unto Caeser, Jesus descended from His seat and said, render unto God that which is belongs to God.  While man collects money to further feeding His flesh, God demands of man that which belongs to Him.  You know, we were bought with a price.  Our lives are not our own.  And while man is satisfied with coins, God wont be satisfied until we surrender to Him our life!

He is ready to walk with us! I wondered to myself, What would happen is The Lord, The Prophet and Zion worked together.  A strand of 3 is not easily broken I hear.  The strength and harmony of each chord strummed at the same time, all fully working

3strand

together to bring about Kingdom and God’s will upon the earth.  All levels and layers, working to full capacity to bring heaven to earth.  All working to shake the very foundation of heaven and earth, making sure the truth of God was spread to the outermost parts of the earth.  What if we all had a sense of urgency, and allowed the voice of God to boom from Jerusalem?  What would happen if Zion once again walked boldly, not concerned about the response of a defeated foe?

Verse 17 says,
You will be convinced that I the Lord and your God,
dwelling on Zion, my holy mountain. 
Jerusalem will be holy-
conquering armies will no longer pass through it.

Could it be that some of us are still not convinced?  Hmp!  “I the Lord am your God”!  I hear Him say.  All He has spoken will surely come to pass.

 

#PastorJDO3

You’re King, But I AM! (2 Kings 9:6)

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So Jehu got up and went inside.  Then the prophet
poured the oil on his head and said to him,
“This is what the LORD God of Israel says,
I have designated you as king
over the LORD’s people Israel.’
2 Kings 9:6

I am continually inspired by the 9 Chapter of 2 Kings, which features Jehu, an eventual King receiving instructions and taking action.  In the 6th verse, we find key words for Jehu, ones that have been spoken in some way to each of God’s servants in some form or fashion.  The young Prophet (who is nameless) tells Jehu, “I have designated you as king over the Lord’s people Israel.”  

worship-fastYes, carefully crafted in the message delivered to Jehu is information that is key to not just becoming king, but remaining king and being effective as king.  But I fear Jehu as many before him, and many to follow, hear the first portion and not the last.  The portion that often unseats those God has chosen is forgetting who the people belong too.  Though given authority and leadership, we must all remember, “You are King, But He is God!”  Better stated,  You are king, But He I AM!  He is the one in control!  The ever existent one who places people in authority, and removes them without consultation or permission is the one that has sent to message to uninstall Ahab and install  Jehu as though they were APPs on a smart phone.  It’s just that simple!

We learn to much from the order spoken to Jehu in his calling to be King from the Prophet.  Our submission as ones in authority first comes from the one who placed us in authority, and allows us to act with authority.  Even a King is Submitted to God.  Everyone is subject to authority.  We are placed over and called to lead that which does not belong to us.  It’s not even ours on loan!  It’s not on layaway.  It’s not lead to own!  It’s not even a partnership, it’s an assignment. 

Not only do the people belong to the LORD, the King does.  Not just in title and deed, but in designation from lineage.  The King is not a contract worker waiting for a 1099.   He is an employee that God has raised from the ranks to lead His people.  Furthermore, though called out from them to be King, Jehu was one of the LORD’s people. Sometimes this is lost in the translation.  As leaders and position holders, we forget that we too are sheep (often operating without a Shepherd)!  We are just as imperfect as the people we lead, but have the responsibility of being the eyes and ears that keep the people headed towards God.  We are watchman, that feed, and protect those God has chosen, keeping them not only from danger, but in pastures that allow them go grow closer to Him.  Thus our relationship and our discipline must remain focal points, and while others might stray, it is our responsibility to remain fully submitted and obedient.

And a reminder to Jehu, and all of us; just as quick as authority is given, it can be taken.  The length of his reign, as with others, would be determined by his obedience to the LORD, not his networking with others.  As he had seen, Ahab and Jezebel had the network of networks, and were being removed from office because of their lack of dedication to the LORD and by leading the people of God astray having them worship other gods.

 

#PastorJDO3

 

The Dialogue Pt. 1

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I am blessed to be connected to some very powerful and true men of God.  Not perfect men, but true men, whom God has strategically placed to change the hearts of men, and to turn over the course of mankind.

I thought it beneficial to share exerts from a conversation, not identifying the speaker or speakers, but the pure sincerity and truth of the prophets God has waiting in the hills to rise up and take the stance for the Kingdom of God.  Come Holy Spirit on me

The original context of the dialogue steamed from a keen awareness that the community, not just the African American Community, but the Kingdom needing a developing and emerging wave of generals to pick up the mantle and also affect change in the course of our existence!

Speaker 1:  “We need a Prophet!”
Speaker 2:  “One that understand His call is to God first and the people second.”
Speaker 3:  “God has already sent a prophet, and a savior. We need to embrace the power  of what He’s already sent”
Speaker 1: “Yes!”
Speaker 3: “GOD said we have EVERYTHING we need to be successful in life and religion. He already gave it to us, we have to activate it.
Speaker 2: “In that, we must walk in the power of the Holy Spirit to defeat the establishment like Jesus”
Speaker 1:  “But the Holy Spirit is taboo, “mystical” at best!”
Speaker 3:  “By increasing our faith and an understanding of agape love the way God demonstrates it
Speaker 1: “activate” I say “surrender to” The Holy Spirit hasn’t been our guide for ages! We have the backpack and never call for the map (Dora)
Speaker 3: The Holy Spirit is fact. We are just scared to embrace it’s power
Speaker 1: “We want it’s power, but don’t have an appetite for righteousness!
Speaker 2: But the power lies in our faith and righteousness
Speaker 1: The Holy Spirit will give us wisdom, power and confidence to defeat the enemy, but it will also cause us to defeat and deny our flesh.
Speaker 3: We’re powerless without it
Speaker 1: It’s the combination of being selected through faith and seeking righteousness that will shine a light that is different and attractive.
Speaker 2: If the woman with the issue of blood was healed by her faith, why can’t a community with an issue of shedding blood be healed by our faith?
Speaker 1:  We have sunk into is masking and medicating problems.
Our country is not build on finding solutions, just dealing with the symptoms, and this has flowed over into our faith. We mask the problem by prescribing and taking things that make us seem healed as opposed to working to become well
Speaker 2: The symptoms cause the problems in our life but the cause (sin) is the only real cure.
Speaker 1: Wellness is faith, but it is also a decision to trust and to work towards what you believe to be true, applying the power and walking in discipline while you wait upon manifestation to occur!

(Discussion Continued)…

Join the discussion!  What are your thoughts and perceptions?  How can we Heal and Avoid Medicating?  Even more, when we will start taking what the Word prescribes, and not Self Medicating and Using Home Remedies?

 

#PastorJDO3

 

The Lion’s Roar (Amos 3:4-8)

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Amos 3:4 Does a lion roar in the thicket when it has no prey? Does it growl in its den when it has caught nothing?
7  Surely the Sovereign LORD does nothing without revealing             his plan to his servants the prophets.
8 The lion has roared— who will not fear?    The Sovereign LORD            has spoken— who can but prophesy?

 

This week, we found ourselves in the 3rd Chapter of Amos, looking at his prophetic to God’s people.  He informs the people that the Lord has decided to punish Israel.  Their time spent feeding their flesh and being disobedient to His commandments and to the word given through His prophet have caused God to take action against His people.  There is no turning back he advises them.  The ball has been set into motion.  It’s inevitable!

He then explains further, informing them of something key.  See, they have ignored all the warning signs.  They heard the words of the prophet and would not give heed to them.  Amos says, “does a lion roaring the thicket with it has no prey?V. 4  For those late to the story, God is the Lion and we are the prey.  Amos informs the hearers that God is in the thicket.

Lion sitting in tall grass

20 Jun 2013 — Lion sitting in tall grass — Image by © Jeremy Woodhouse/Blend Images/Corbis

We talked about the National Geographic videos that feature the unaware deer grazing in the field, while the lion sits couched just feet away, waiting for the right time to pounce.  My friends, God is not dead!  He is not unaware!  He is not sleep!  He is God!  He never sleeps nor does He slumber!  He could be called the silent killer, but he gives a warning first.  The people, like us, believed that God was pleased and or not bothered by their action because he not stop it immediately.  They continued feeding their flesh, believing that they were getting way with it. They weren’t!  He watched the whole time!

Sister Ashley spoke of the frustration watching the video.  Though the dear is unaware, the viewer and the lion are not.  Point being, often those around us see the larger picture.  While the dear or person grazes, they  often does not realize they are in trouble.  They eat peacefully, while those watching scream helplessly at the screen.  We are that dear!  We carelessly feed our flesh, as though the lion does not exist.  But a newsflash; God is not sleeping.  He “…neither sleeps nor slumbers…” Psalm 121:4   He is watching us!  24 Hour surveillance!  He sees and knows all, yet we act as though he is knowledgeable of our sins!

Amos continues,“…the Sovereign LORD does nothing without revealing his plan to his servants the prophets…” V.7   In other words, before the Lord strikes from the “thicket”he speaks to the prophet.  He informs the prophet of his plans, that he might speak to the people before he strikes.    After crouching, the Lion leaps into action, chasing relentlessly until it corners its prey.

The question was asked of the group, “Have you ever been cornered?” As a consensus, the majority agreed that Sunday service tends to feel like this.  It’s word that comes from the mouth of the prophet that lets you know that God has been watching.   Often we sit through messages that leave  us feeling as though the preacher has been following us around, documenting all our thoughts and actions.  This feeling is the result of God’s leading of the man of God, giving him or her the words to speak to his people.  The listener sits in their seat, confronted by the truth and the power and knowledge of the lion, feeling helpless and powerless, many times looking for a way of escape.  It is amazing how many come to church and are still shocked when the preacher speaks right to their circumstances; however, let us recall this to be God’s process.  He speaks first to His prophet.  He gives instructions and warnings!

Here we find ourselves in the midst of a hidden truth, the Prophet is the Lions Roar.   Amos speaks and then says, “The lion has roared— who will not fear?”  V.8   Verse 6, He says, “If an alarm sounds…do not the people fear?”  Amos speaks forth God’s truth!  The people are cornered.  Their sins have been revealed, and God’s plan uncovered!  He then ask, “…who will not fear?” V. 8   After the Lord roars, we like the cornered dear, should be filled with fear.  We should drop what we are doing.  We should change our direction.  We should hide our face.  We should repent!  However, what we find is often the deer is so caught up in its grazing, that the lion is on his back with jaws clinched between his neck and spin.  The prophet stands before the people sounding the alarm for the city, and yet people continue with business as usual.

When will we heed the word of the prophet?  As our world continues to fall deeper into living for the flesh, we must find ourselves finding a new appreciation for the word of God and for the voice He determines to deliver it through.  We must not look at the Prophet as just another person, but according to the assignment that has been given to him or her.  Respecting the office and responding to His instructions with urgency, because He watches the lion while we graze.

 

#PastorJDO3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And Now a Word from our Sponsor! I Kings 13:29-30

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Honestly, reading this passage angered me!

(Quick Summary for those who are unfamiliar with the passage).  As I followed the journey of this Prophet (only identified from his location), I admired his courage and obedience, as he stood before Jeroboam and delivered the prophecy given to him.  Furthermore, we watch as Jeroboam, angered by the prophecy, lifted his hand against the messenger of God and discovered it to be a bad idea!  The prophet is defended and protected by the Lord, and is obedient in that he refuses to eat and drink with the King who was in rebellion to the Lord.  He was obedient in taking a different route, and on said route was confronted by an older prophet who lied to him, claiming that the Lord had instructed him differently.  He listens to the older prophet, and thus finds himself disobedient, and suffers death by an attack of a lion!  

I was angered because the young prophet, in respect of the older prophet listened, trusted and followed him.  I know, The Lord gave him STRICT INSTRUCTIONS!!!!  I know!  I know!  I know!!!!  BUT…….His journey was interrupted by an older prophet, who commanded him to return with him, under the authority of the LORD.  His claim was that an Angel of the Lord sent him, much like he was sent by the Lord with a message to Jeroboam.   In defense of this young prophet, WHO would dare give a WORD in the name of the LORD when it wasn’t given from Him?  lions-1024x682

I know, The LORD gave him STRICT INSTRUCTIONS!!!!  I know!  I know!  I know!!!!  BUT the Older Prophet lied to him!!!  The young Prophet knew to fear the LORD and assumed that the older Prophet would too, thus he believed his fellow servant.  It seems  in all this, the old Prophet should have been punished for leading the young prophet astray, but instead, the young Prophet was punished for listening to his elder.

Is this fair?  I know, The LORD gave him STRICT INSTRUCTIONS!!!!  I know!  I know!  I know!!!!

Have you even been mislead?  Have you ever been mislead by someone you Trusted? Someone you Respected?  

It turns out, that the first task was to Speak to Jeroboam, and the second task was to not to listen to the Old Prophet. God knew that their paths would cross.  He knew that the Prophet would seek him, and lie to him!

Could it be that the LORDS instruction to not eat or drink in the Bethel was an instruction specifically to keep him from dining with the old Prophet.  Seeing as though he was in the city of Jeroboam, one could suggest that he was not chosen by the LORD to deliver the message because He had demonstrated in the past the same characteristic that he displayed to the young Prophet on the road.  It could be that the Lord was protecting the young Prophet not just from being on Jeroboams payroll, but from the influence and mentorship of a servant who had misused his power and position for his well being.

Though unfortunate; the LORD holds us responsible for the WORD that He gave to us.  In our time with God, He prepares us for our journey, and for the events and encounters we will have in pursuit of being obedient to the assignment He gives us.  Though He doesn’t announce and or give specifics to the exams, we can all attest to the fact that God prepares us, and we are armed with enough to conquer all we encounter.

I found it most interesting that the LORD protected the young Prophet twice in the passage, once in front of Jeroboam, and the second on the side of the road with the Lion.  Though the Lion killed him, he was assigned to protect the corpse until the older Prophet retrieved him and gave him a proper burial. 

All in all, I contend that the worst part of the last moments of the young Prophets life was not death by the Lion, but receiving word of his death from the very person who mislead Him.

 

 

I named this blog, “And Now a Word from our Sponsor” because of the scene under the oak tree.  It reminded me of the interruptions we experience while watching our favorite programing.  Advertisers use these moments to sway us to purchase their products, often exaggerating and or falsely advertising their performance and usefulness.  They pressure the viewer into purchasing in a small window, because they are aware that the more thought spent on contemplating the purchase, the less likely the viewer is to make purchase.  They use as many false testimonies and also claim to be recommended by experts in the field, who are actors and actresses paid to play a role in convincing the audience to purchase the item.  We must not make choices hastily, because quick decisions often lead to our destruction.