He offered sacrifices to the gods of Damascus, who had defeated him; for he thought, “Since the gods of the kings of Aram have helped them, I will sacrifice to them so they will help me.” But they were his downfall and the downfall of all Israel. 2 Chronicles 28:23
Seeking help when in need is commonly done all around the world. When someone is seeking help, they will look to where other people are getting their help. It often does not matter where the help comes from, they will accept it.
Often in the process of searching for help, they accept help that is not real or is false help. It is the enemy seeking to find a way to infiltrate and get control.
Ahaz and all of Israel were living in rebellion against God following false gods. When the king of Aram had defeated him, he chose to offer sacrifice to their gods thinking that they may help him also. These became a snare to the nation and brought about their downfall.
Many believers have seen others who have nothing to do with God become very successful. When they see this they choose to follow their ways, rather than God’s ways.
They begin to compromise God’s standards in their lives. They begin to cheat and lie in small ways to get ahead, thinking this is the best way to succeed. They begin to promote ways that do not follow God and accept sin in their lives.
Physical sacrifice to false gods does not happen a lot in many nations, but sacrifice to worldly ways occurs all the time. Allowing sin to reign and using sin to get promoted occurs everywhere. Belief that just because someone is successful it must be good takes over the thinking, rather than looking at the bigger picture of what is really happening. Sinful lifestyles are being ignored and accepted inside the church.
You are called to be in this world, but not of it. You are to be separate from this world, yet a light in this world.
If you are living your life and trusting in the ways of this world as the world does, you are no different. The help that the world often receives is false help and false hope. You have a living God who has made a way for you. Trust in Him alone and sacrifice your life to Him alone.
Don’t allow a downfall come to your life.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that you will trust in God alone for your provision and help; that you will not follow the ways of this world; and that you will be a light in this world for Jesus.
The high places, however, were not removed; the people continued to offer sacrifices and burn incense there. 2 Kings 12:3
In cleaning out some things, extreme attention to detail must be used. Everything must be cleaned correctly, or it will end up failing. When a doctor is removing cancer cells from a person’s body, he must remove every cell or the cancer will return very quickly. The problem can re-arise when things are not fully done.
There are many things that need to be cleaned with extreme care or there will be problems later on. Cleaning of water, dishes, food, electronic equipment and more. Each one requires that all contaminants be removed. If some contaminants are left, it can cause sickness or damage to something or someone.
Joash had become king at a very young age and was under the guidance of Jehoiada, a priest. He had done very well in doing what was right in God’s eyes, but he did not remove any of the high places to the false gods in the land of Israel. This allowed the people to continue to offer sacrifices to the false gods on a regular basis.
Although at the time, it did not appear to be a problem, allowing these sacrifices would later keep the people from serving God. It would cause them to walk away from God and bring on His wrath against them.
Believers today will often leave sinful things in their lives, instead of cleaning them out. They will keep watching, or listening to things that do not honor God. These things will open the door to greater sins or a turning away from God completely.
Every believer is to strive to walk in the holiness and righteousness that Jesus provided when He died upon the cross. Sin is to be turned away from. The world will strive to bring small sins in to distract and turn the believer away from God, whether the believer accepts those things or not is the choice to be made.
Examine your life and see how clean is your life. What high places are still set up in your life that do not honor God or can turn your heart away from God?
God can reveal where you have altars set up. There should only be one altar in your life–one to God alone. Jesus paid for your life, now live for Him and remove all altars so you don’t get tripped up later on.
I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will reveal any false altars in your life; that you will have an altar to God in your heart; and that God will strengthen you to turn away from all sin.
He waited seven days, the time set by Samuel; but Samuel did not come to Gilgal, and Saul’s men began to scatter. So he said, “Bring me the burnt offering and the fellowship offerings.” And Saul offered up the burnt offering. 1 Samuel 13:8-9
Most people do not like to wait for other people. When they want to get something done, they do it themselves. Often it is because they have been let down by others in the past. Friends or co-workers did not show up, so the job had to be done alone.
Having patience to wait for someone else is not something most people have. They want the help and they want it right away on their own timetable.
Saul had done this very thing. He was getting ready to fight against the Philistines. He and Samuel had agreed to a set date for Samuel to come and offering the sacrifices to God for His favor in the battle.
When Samuel did not show up at the appointed time, Saul immediately took things into his own hands. He proceeded immediately to offer the sacrifices to God, something he was not allowed to do. As soon as he had finished offering the sacrifices, Samuel showed up. It was at this point Samuel stated that God was already beginning to pull the kingdom away from Saul, because he did not obey.
It is common for people to call out to God for help, but do not wait for His answer. Or when they hear Him say He will provide the answer, they do not wait for His timing to answer the prayer.
This is often done out of fear. They do not believe God can or will actually accomplish what He said He would do. Instead of following God’s instructions, they take things into their own hands. This shows a lack of faith in God.
God’s word has said that He will provide for you. When you hear that God will do this, you must trust His words. At those times when God says to wait, you must wait. Do not jump ahead of God and take things into your own hands. Leave the events in His hands.
God is faithful and will not break His word. He will do what He needs to do at the perfect time, not your time. Wait on Him and trust Him.
I pray today that you will trust God’s timing; that you will trust God’s word in your life; that you will obey God’s commands to you; and that you will leave things in God’s hands.