Malachi 2:15 Do Not Be Unfaithful

Has not the one God made you? You belong to him in body and spirit. And what does the one God seek? Godly offspring. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful to the wife of your youth. Malachi 2:15

Some of the people had been asking why they no longer had God’s favor. God had removed His hand of favor from them because they had become unfaithful with their wives. Ultimately they had divorced their wives, causing greater damage and harm. Through Malachi, God gives the warning to not be unfaithful in marriage.

Divorce is a common activity in the lives of couples all over the nation. It has become so common that nearly half of all marriages end in divorce. Sadly, this is also true for Christian marriages. At times this statistic is lower, but it is because fewer people are getting married and are just living together, still in sin.

Every believer belongs to God, both in body and in spirit. There is nothing that does not belong to God, when one is following Him.

One thing that God wants is for children to be brought up knowing God. When there is divorce, there is a breakdown in really knowing God. God is known for love, care, selflessness, patience, forgiveness, perseverance, and service. It is about the other person.

In marriages, people often forget about God’s principles and how they are to act and react. One or the other runs around being unfaithful. Or one of them is abusive in various ways causing the desire for divorce.

During the Old Testament times, a woman who was divorced had nothing to live for. No income, no house, and no favor. For the husband to divorce her, it was abuse. God did not want it, and still does not want it.

As a believer you are to be faithful to God and to the one  you are married to. This is for both men and women. God is a God of love and forgiveness. You must also be like Jesus and be for love and forgiveness.

Watch yourself in your life. Keep a guard on what you say, think or do so that you cannot be accused of being unfaithful to either a spouse or God. To be unfaithful to one, you are unfaithful to the other.

Are you being faithful today?

I pray today that you will be faithful to God and your spouse; that you will allow God to guide your every action; that you will treat your spouse as God treats you; and that God will help you make your marriage strong.

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Hosea 3:1 Love As God Loves

The LORD said to me, “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another man and is an adulteress. Love her as the LORD loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes.” Hosea 3:1

Hosea’s wife had been unfaithful to him and went off to be with other men. God tells him to accept her back and still love her. He takes it even further with telling Hosea to love her in the same way that He loved the Israelites, who had chosen to follow other gods.

Marriage is one area that people will often talk about unfaithfulness. One spouse becomes unsatisfied with the other and goes out seeking where that one can find love from another. As that occurs, anger and revenge usually builds up, the relationship is often destroyed and trust is lost. The spouse that was faithful, usually tell the other one that the marriage is over and will not be loved again.

People in the church are often guilty of this same unfaithfulness to God and to others. Loyal friends stab a friend in the back, striving to look better or raise higher. Hurting gossip is spread, damaging a person’s reputation or life. Turning the back on a friend in need. Telling lies behind a person’s back.

Each of these things and many more can happen, causing great pain and anger. Most people will reject a person who has done this, and refuse to have anything to do with that person. There is no forgiveness or love shown, because of the pain and anger.

Yet, God tells His people to love as He loved. God loved so much that He sent His Son to die for a people who rejected Him and did not want Him. He loved you before you even knew about Him or accepted Him.

God also loved you when you rejected Him. Think of the times when you went against God and followed this world or your own ways. Even then, God still loved you.

In this same way, you must be willing to love those who have hurt you and rejected you. Show God’s eternal perfect love to everyone around you, not just those who are faithful. It is through this love that others can learn of God’s true love. Love as God loves you.

I pray today that you will know God’s love for you and others; that you will show God’s love to others; that you will trust God in the pain others put you through; and that you will be His witness to this dying and hurting world.

Jeremiah 3:19-20 Hurting God

“I myself said, ” ‘How gladly would I treat you like my children and give you a pleasant land, the most beautiful inheritance of any nation.’ I thought you would call me ‘Father’ and not turn away from following me. But like a woman unfaithful to her husband, so you, Israel, have been unfaithful to me,” declares the LORD. Jeremiah 3:19-20

God was expressing great sorrow over the nation of Israel. He had brought them up as His children and given them all that they needed. He expected them to love Him back and call Him ‘Father.’ Yet, they did not do that. They gave themselves over to other gods and were like an unfaithful wife.

At this point, many Christians, are very quick to point out the sin of their nation. They like to point out the great sins that are being accepted and done across the land. Sins of drugs, adultery, fornication, theft, violence, pornography, homosexuality and many others are brought up. People rise in anger against these sins.

Yet, many of these same Christians are living in sin themselves. Common, ‘small’ sins are gossip, lying, cheating, and hatred. Some will say they are giving the information, just to pray for the person. Others state God’s word in anger against the person of the world living in sin, with no love being shown at all.

When a person is living and acting like this, one must ask if he is really being faithful to God?

As you see horrible, sinful things occurring in the world or in your community, what are  your thoughts?

Do you have thoughts like many in the world and the church–justice needs to be served, judgment, and hatred against someone?

Or does your heart-break for those involved?

When Jesus came to the earth, His heart was broken for those who were dying in their sins. His harshest judgment was for those who claimed to be believers in God, yet did not live for God.

God wants to give the best to you. He wants to be the best Father that you could ever possibly have. He does not want to punish you or be upset with you and your actions.

How are you treating God today?

With love as a son or daughter?

Or hatred as an unfaithful wife?

I pray today that you will see God as your loving Father; that you will know God’s faithfulness and goodness to you; that you will be faithful to God; that you will show love to all around you; and that you will not live in any sinful way.

Ezra 10:6 Weeping For Others

Then Ezra withdrew from before the house of God and went to the room of Jehohanan son of Eliashib. While he was there, he ate no food and drank no water, because he continued to mourn over the unfaithfulness of the exiles. Ezra 10:6

The Israelites who had gone back to rebuild the temple, had turned away from God’s laws and began to marry those of the foreign nations. Ezra was disturbed by their actions and wept before God for their unfaithfulness. He, himself, had not done anything wrong, but was weeping over the fact that the people had been unfaithful to God and did what was forbidden.

It is easy for a person to see the sins of other people. Christians are always talking about the sins of the nation they live in or the other people in their church. They, then, want to enact laws to change the ability to sin. Or they complain about what other people are doing or are allowed to do.

Ezra did not complain about the sins of the people, but wept and fasted over them before God. He admitted the guilt of himself and the people to God. Ezra was not guilty of the things that the other people were guilty of, yet he was willing to mourn before God about the sins being committed.

Jesus wept over Jerusalem as He looked at their sins that the followers of God were committing against God. He did not just condemn them and point out sins. He allowed God to work in their lives by His Holy Spirit, while doing everything that He could do.

As a believer, you can point out God’s word to other people and strive to point them in the right direction, but you cannot change their hearts. Only God can change a person’s heart and draw them back to Himself.

When you see the sins that other believers are committing, how are you reacting?

Do you condemn them and gossip to others about their sins?

Or do you go before God with weeping and fasting for those who have walked away from God into sin?

I pray that God will soften your heart for those who have walked away from God; that you will seek God to touch the lives of fallen believers; that you will remain faithful to God; and that God will use you to draw others back to Him.