1 “Woe to the rebellious children,” says the LORD,
“Who take counsel, but not of Me,
“Who take counsel, but not of Me,
And who devise plans, but not of My Spirit,
That they may add sin to sin;
2 Who walk to go down to Egypt,
And have not asked My advice,
To strengthen themselves in the strength of Pharaoh,
And to trust in the shadow of Egypt!
3 Therefore the strength of Pharaoh
Shall be your shame,
And trust in the shadow of Egypt
Shall be your humiliation.
4 For his princes were at Zoan,
And his ambassadors came to Hanes.
5 They were all ashamed of a people who could not benefit them,
Or be help or benefit,
But a shame and also a reproach.”
6 The burden against the beasts of the South.
Through a land of trouble and anguish,
From which came the lioness and lion,
The viper and fiery flying serpent,
They will carry their riches on the backs of young donkeys,
And their treasures on the humps of camels,
To a people who shall not profit;
7 For the Egyptians shall help in vain and to no purpose.
Therefore I have called her
Rahab-Hem-Shebeth. (meaning "Power that does nothing")
8 Now go, write it before them on a tablet,
And note it on a scroll,
That it may be for time to come,
Forever and ever:
9 That this is a rebellious people,
Children who will not hear the law of the LORD;
10 Who say to the seers, “Do not see,”
And to the prophets, “Do not prophesy to us right things;
Speak to us smooth things, prophesy deceits.
11 Get out of the way,
Turn aside from the path,
Cause the Holy One of Israel
To cease from before us.”
12 Therefore thus says the Holy One of Israel:
“Because you despise this word,
And trust in oppression and perversity,
And rely on them,
13 Therefore this iniquity shall be to you
Like a breach ready to fall,
A bulge in a high wall,
Whose breaking comes suddenly, in an instant.
14 And He shall break it like the breaking of the potter’s vessel,
Which is broken in pieces;
He shall not spare.
So there shall not be found among its fragments
A shard to take fire from the hearth,
Or to take water from the cistern.”
15 For thus says the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel:
“In returning and rest you shall be saved;
In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.”
But you would not,
16 And you said, “No, for we will flee on horses”—
Therefore you shall flee!
And, “We will ride on swift horses”—
Therefore those who pursue you shall be swift!
17 One thousand shall flee at the threat of one,
At the threat of five you shall flee,
Till you are left as a pole on top of a mountain
And as a banner on a hill.
18 Therefore the LORD will wait, that He may be gracious to you;
And therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.
For the LORD is a God of justice;
Blessed are all those who wait for Him.
19 For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem;
You shall weep no more.
He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry;
When He hears it, He will answer you.
20 And though the Lord gives you
The bread of adversity and the water of affliction,
Yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore,
But your eyes shall see your teachers.
21 Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,
“ This is the way, walk in it,”
Whenever you turn to the right hand
Or whenever you turn to the left.
22 You will also defile the covering of your images of silver,
And the ornament of your molded images of gold.
You will throw them away as an unclean thing;
You will say to them, “Get away!”
23 Then He will give the rain for your seed
With which you sow the ground,
And bread of the increase of the earth;
It will be fat and plentiful.
In that day your cattle will feed
In large pastures.
24 Likewise the oxen and the young donkeys that work the ground
Will eat cured fodder,
Which has been winnowed with the shovel and fan.
25 There will be on every high mountain
And on every high hill
Rivers and streams of waters,
In the day of the great slaughter,
When the towers fall.
26 Moreover the light of the moon will be as the light of the sun,
And the light of the sun will be sevenfold,
As the light of seven days,
In the day that the LORD binds up the bruise of His people
And heals the stroke of their wound.
I refuse to think that God changes to deal with problems differently based on the times and popular ideas. God's method for cleansing Israel and the Church are the same. Throughtout the NT, Israel and the Church are referenced to each other several times. Israel is God's chosen nation, they rebelled, left God and abandoned His Ways. Jesus Christ went to the Cross and made a way for Gentiles to receive His salvation. The Jews were still in rebellion to God, so God raised up a new people to Bless His Name, the Church. Now tell me, where in there did God change? Where did His Standards and requirements change? They didn't, only the recipients of His Grace. So now the Church, being the recipients of His Grace, Mercy, and Salvation, have taken the path of Israel and have taken refuge in the filthy things of this world. We go off doing our own thing in the church, not once thinking to ask God what He wants (v. 1-2); taking part in it's abomonations of popularity, pride, alchoholism, adultery, and just all-out perversion. We trust in our own abilities, our own pockets, our own skills of speech and music over the Blessings of God! (v. 2) The worst part is that we think we're doing the right thing! We are deceiving ourselves and others straight to Hell! Money doesn't get you salvation! Church attendance doesn't get you salvation! Preaching doesn't get you salvation! Etcetera! This is our shame, our humiliation. We should be embarrassed to call ourselves the Church. (v. 3) The Church, even under a great deal of scrutiny (which is well deserved), still has a very big stage in this world! It has power and influence and resources, but we don't do anything but comfort ourselves with it and attend to our own agendas (v. 6). It is a shame for us to have all of that, and not glorify God a single bit with it. We would do better to call ourselves "Rahab-Hem-Shebeth." (v. 7) And how much worse is it that when the Truth does come through someone willing to devote themselves to God, we shut our ears and tune them out as heretics and crazy people. We would much rather live a lie knowinly and be comfortable. (v. 9) To the ones that do See, we try to blind them! To those who preach the Word and Truth of God, we try to shut them up and demand that they teach us things that are easy to hear; practically telling them to lie to us to make us comfortable! Saying, "We don't want God, we want pleasure! Tell your God to move and stop ruinning our party!" (v. 10-11) How shameful! We don't even deserve to live with such blasphemy as that streaming out of our mouths! Lucky for us that won't be too much longer. The Lord says our destruction will come soon because of our rebellion. Our own sin, desires, and iniquity will cause it all to crumble. We will be crushed under the weight of our own sin until we are broken into pieces so tiny, you can't even think of using it. (v. 12-14) Is this really the road we want to take, Church? We are well on our way to destruction. And by the way, destruction doesn't come from outside oppression. Just like all the powerhouses in history (Rome, Egypt, Greece, America, etc.), destruction comes from the inside-out. When the foundation crumbles, the rest is just a matter of time. Think this is just speculation? What happened to Israel after Christ was risen? Because of their rebellion to God's own Son, they were wiped off the map for 1,850 years. Don't be foolish, God is NOT mocked. Man will get what he asks for.
So, are you saying there is only punishment, no redemption? Absolutely not. God is always there for those who truly want out of their sin and into His infinite Mercies. But, you can't do it. The moment you think redemption comes down to you, your slide back down into the pit begins. God has offered us a way out the entire journey, but we don't listen. We miss His voice because we are always so busy doing and not listening. There is a reason God said, "BE STILL, and KNOW that I am GOD."(Ps. 46:10a) Emphasis on BE STILL!(v. 15) Instead, we again trust in our own abilities and end up destroying ourselves even more. Isn't it amazing how we exhaust every resource possible before falling back on God? Sometimes I think we won't stop until we've completely destroyed ourselves. Are we that determined to do it ourselves? Doing everything we can ourselves until all we have left is total despartion, where surrender is our only option?(v. 16-17) I kind of think God made us that way, don't you?
Aren't you so glad it doesn't end there? The Word says "The Lord will wait to be gracious to you..." Can you believe it? Almighty God is waiting to be gracious to us! He will be lifted up and exalted so He can have Mercy on us! Just as a side note, don't you see that everything that happens to us is for His Glory! Even our rebellion! And when we take part and glorify Him, we get a piece and are blessed! Unbelievable! Then at the end of it all we learn the lesson that will keep us on the paths of righteousness as much as any other: "Blessed are those who wait on the Lord!" I don't know about anybody else, but one of my favorite situations is getting paid to do nothing. Yet when it comes to God's Will, we are busy-bodies. If we wait, we are blessed! Patience is the key to the door of God's opportunity! (v. 18) He has promised to take care of us always! To smile with us when the road is easy, laugh with us when joy over-flows, hold us when the road is rough, and carry us when we don't have the strength! How Great is Our GOD?! Not to sound clich`e, but its so true! Our God is awesome! (v. 19) And when we are met with adversity laid in front of us by His Hand, He will put a Guide in front of us to lead us through it and draw us closer to Him! (v. 20) And when we are met with a cross-roads, He is the voice behind us telling us which way to go! (v. 21) And once we have tasted the infinite mercies of the Gracious God, we will be hooked and want nothing else! His touch will be our desire, His voice our longing, we will yearn for His Love! Once we have Him in our life, in our heart, the things of the world that got us in desperate need in the first place will become disgusting to us! We will revile the sight of it! We will hate the things that God hates! (v. 22) Guys, this is what we long for! This is our hearts ultimate desire! think of all the things you have ever wanted, could not God fullfil every single one of those and then some? Acceptance? Intimacy? Love? A Family? A Friend? All of it! God is THE PROVIDER!!! Then, all those things we wanted, like prosperity, will follow where His hand goes! Possessions mean nothing, but like any other human, i will not not complain if God decides to bless me in that way like He promised! (v. 23-26)
God is everything we want or need! Aren't you ready to give up doing it yourself and give it to God? You know how it ends, let God handle it! I pray that God has allowed me to bless you, but most of all that I have glorified Him with every word. I love you, guys! Good night! =]
1 Cor. 12:9
P.S. Any comments or concerns, txt me! 205-434-0794!