Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Welcome to Day 86 of our Life Journal!
Before you comment or read what I have posted, please read the following passages for yourself and complete your own S.O.A.P. exercise… How does this work?
S.O.A.P = Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer
Judges 1 Israel fought the remaining Canaanites but didn’t finish the job. And of course, it comes back to bite them…
Judges 2, “Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the LORD, died at the age of a hundred and ten. 9 And they buried him in the land of his inheritance, at Timnath Heres in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash. 10 After that whole generation had been gathered to their ancestors,
another generation grew up who knew neither the LORD nor what he had done for Israel.
11 Then the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD and served the Baals. 12 They forsook the LORD, the God of their ancestors, who had brought them out of Egypt. They followed and worshiped various gods of the peoples around them. They aroused the LORD’s anger 13 because they forsook him and served Baal and the Ashtoreths. 14 In his anger against Israel the LORD gave them into the hands of raiders who plundered them. He sold them into the hands of their enemies all around, whom they were no longer able to resist. 15 Whenever Israel went out to fight, the hand of the LORD was against them to defeat them, just as he had sworn to them. They were in great distress. 16 Then the LORD raised up judges, who saved them out of the hands of these raiders.”
Summary in two words, disobedience and defeat.
Judges 3, a deceptive assassination and more warring against the Moabites.
1 Corinthians 12:27, “Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? 31 Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.”
Obvious answer to that rhetorical question?
vs 11, “All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.”
So much to chew on today. I find myself very sad as I read from Judges… That the generations that knew the great things that God had done for them, Egypt, the Red Sea, the pillar of smoke, the tabernacle, etc…
Judges 2:10, “another generation grew up who knew neither the LORD nor what he had done for Israel.”
How is that possible??
As much as I’d like to focus on the body analogy, I’m going to focus on Judges 2…
Did you notice? Throughout Joshua, there is very little mentioned about the Tabernacle or the Law. Mostly war and taking the land that God had promised them. Only twice is the Tabernacle mentioned in Joshua. (Chapter 22.)
Keep in mind that Joshua and Caleb were the only men over age 20 to enter the Promised Land.
I know after having raised our four kids (ages 19, 21, 23 and 25) that it really does take dedication and focus living our faith, day in and day out, month after month, year after year. They had to see us living it out over the long haul. As God told Moses in Deuteronomy 6 “These are the commands, decrees and laws the LORD your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, 2 so that you,
your children and their children after them may fear the LORD your God
as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life…” And it goes on from there… all the promises that God made to Israel, to their children, to their children’s children… if…
My kids are all young adults now. All across the board in terms of where they are at spiritually. They all believe in God. The foundation has been laid. But now it’s up to them.
Will they marry the right person? Will they serve other gods? What will they teach to THEIR children. Remains to be seen.
Having said all that, here’s the reality… It’s MY job to teach my kids. Not the school, at which there is no prayer allowed… Or even a Christian school’s job to teach my kids. It’s their job to support. Same with the church.
The church only has our kids a couple of hours per week… that’s if we show up regularly.
It’s what our kids SEE us living out every day that is etched into their hearts and minds and spirit. When we have a problem… when THEY have a problem, do we apply godly, biblical principles and pray? Or do we handle things the way the world does. Do we grumble and gossip or do we bless those who curse us? If someone asks for our coat, do we give them our cloak also? Go the second mile? Turn the other cheek?
I never wanted to be the father who was a pastor. I wanted to be the father who was a Christian. I don’t want to be known as a pastor in the community, but a man with integrity who happens to be a pastor. I don’t want to stay married to prove it can be done. I want to love my wife as Christ loved the church, thereby doing my part to keep our marriage in tact. I want my wife to WANT to be and stay married to me. I wanted my kids to SEE what how to walk out a life of faith. To see what a marriage can be. Including the warts that go with it.
Have I succeeded? Remains to be seen. The foundation has been laid… The seeds planted, but the harvest takes a time… a lifetime in fact. Not all the seeds we planted were good, I’m sure. We’ve made our mistakes, we have our flaws. I’d say it’s like being a doctor, “practicing” medicine. We’re all just working it out.
The community of Israel was hundreds of thousands… Their parents all died in the wilderness… for their disobedience. I’m guessing beyond the sacrifices and festivals, they didn’t do a very good job of Deuteronomy 6-ing their faith… Obviously by Judges 2 they had failed miserably. They couldn’t even drive out the Canaanites.
Lord, I pray that my kids… our kids would know you… More than your laws… your ways.