2 Chronicles 33:7 The Wrong Image

He took the image he had made and put it in God’s temple, of which God had said to David and to his son Solomon, “In this temple and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, I will put my Name forever.” 2 Chronicles 33:7

Manasseh had become king of Judah and led the people into great sins. He set up all of the temples and altars to Baal and Asherah, sacrificed children, practiced witchcraft and consulted with mediums. One of the images he had made, he put up in the temple of God to worship it there. This was where God said He would dwell forever.

People put up idols and images of idols to worship all over the world. In more modern countries, the images are not usually of the typical “gods” that you see in Asian countries. These images are of things that people put before God.

Although there are Christians who do have some things that they idolize out in the open, there are many more who have some things that are idolized only in the heart and mind. It is in the heart and mind of a person that one can hide things from other people. No one can see inside the heart and mind of a person.

It is in there that idols can be set up. Thoughts are allowed to run freely in the mind. As they run, often they go into areas that should not be, such as lust, pornography, greed, anger, vengeance, and more.

Jesus said that He would be with you forever. When you have accepted Jesus into your life, God had set up His dwelling place in your heart and life to live for all eternity. You are now the temple of God. It is in your heart that you are to worship God.

When you allow images of things of this world to be in your heart and mind, you have defiled God’s dwelling place. You have begun to set up images of false gods in your heart.

Do not allow these images in your heart and mind. Do not replace God with false gods. Keep God’s temple clean to worship Him in heart and spirit.

I pray today that you will love God with all your heart; that you will worship God alone; that God will help you remove any images from your life; and that God will be pleased with His temple.

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2 Samuel 12:20 Moving On Past Tragedy

Then David got up from the ground. After he had washed, put on lotions and changed his clothes, he went into the house of LORD and worshiped. Then he went to his own house, and at his request they served him food, and he ate. 2 Samuel 12:20

After David found out that Bathsheba had become pregnant by him, he had her husband killed. Although this was done in secret, God knew and sent Nathan, a prophet, to him to confront him about it. God chose to take the child’s life. While the child was sick, David prayed and fasted, hoping God would relent from taking the child’s life. Once the child had died, David did not spend time mourning the loss of the child, but got up and started eating and worshiping God again.

Tragedy is something that hits people very hard. Loss of a loved one, extreme illness, loss of a job, loss of a part of the body, or one of many other things in life that are hard-hitting. It is very difficult when tragedy hits a person.

Most people begin a time of mourning and weeping at the loss or the tragedy. It is very common for people to go into a time of depression and blaming God for what had happened. Some will even walk away from God because of the tragedy.

Once David’s son had died, he realized there was nothing more that could be done. He cleaned up and went to the temple to worship God. He trusted God’s choice in taking his son’s life. David was willing to worship God, despite the tragedy, and then move on with life.

Staying in depression will not solve or change anything, but keep one miserable.

You may be going through a great tragedy now, or have gone through one in the past. Focus your life on God’s love, mercy, and control. Trust that God knows what He is doing and allowing. Do not get angry with God, but worship Him in spite of the tragedy. Then move on with life.

God has given you the gift of life, don’t waste it in depression about a tragedy in life.

I pray today that you will see God’s hand at work in your life; that you will trust all that God is doing in your life; that God will strengthen you in a tragedy; and that you will lean on God for strength.

Genesis 22:5 Great Expectations

“He said to his servants, Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you.” Genesis 22:5

After many years, one hundred, God finally gives Sarah and Abraham their own son. They name his Isaac. Some years later, after the boy had grown a little older, God tells Abraham to take his son and offer him as a sacrifice.

Immediately Abraham gets his son and takes off to go do a sacrifice. After three days of traveling, Abraham tells the servants with him to wait while he and Isaac go to worship God with a sacrifice. He tells them that they will both return.

Looking at what God told Abraham to do, Abraham had just stated something that should not happen. Isaac was to be killed on an altar. He was not going to return, yet, that is what Abraham had said would happen. Abraham had some great expectations that God would provide for him in some way.

God had promised to make Isaac into a great nation that would bless the world. If Isaac died, then God would have failed. Abraham expected that God would raise Isaac back from the dead or do some other miracle.

God may never ask you to physically sacrifice your own child, but He may ask you to sacrifice something else of great value. You may be looking at that item as something you cannot part with. Yet, God is looking at how faithful you are to Him. How much do you trust Him?

God is never going to ask you to do something that is not for your benefit in the long run. You need to have a great expectation that God will work it out to your benefit in the end. He has given you a promise to provide for all that you need. Do you expect that to happen?

He wants to know where your heart is. Is it in the things that He has blessed you with?

Or is it in Him?

Expect God to meet your needs and go forward with whatever He tells you to do each and every time. Worship God first and let Him take care of everything else.

I pray today that you will know that God will provide for all of your needs; that you will obey God in all that He tells you to do; that you will expect God to do what is best for you; and that you will worship God first and foremost in your life.

Revelation 9:20-21 Hardened Hearts

“The rest of mankind who were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood–idols that cannot see or hear or walk. Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts.” Revelation 9:20-21

In this vision John has God is pouring out His wrath upon mankind for refusing to follow Jesus. He has had the angels pour out plagues upon all mankind destroying a third of them. One third of the number of people on the planet were just killed by God through various disasters and plagues, yet, those who were left refused to repent. They continued to live in their sins.

Many believers believe that if there was a great disaster many people would turn to God. Yes, there are some who will turn to God and stay with God, but the majority will not.

Remember back to 9/11 when a major disaster hit the United States. For a short month or two, many people were filling the churches. It looked like a revival may occur. Then after everything settled down, people went back to their old ways. They left the churches and went back into their selfish sinful living.

The same thing occurred when the major hurricanes hit the nation. Most people started to follow God for a moment, but then went back into sin.

Today the world worships many different idols. These are idols of fame, fortune, looks, prestige, position, sex, violence, and much more.

God is constantly trying to get their attention. He uses a variety of methods to get their attention. Some start to follow God for a moment, usually only until the disaster is over, then go back to their old ways. A very few turn completely to God and stay there.

Where is your heart with God?

Are you following God all the time? Or are you just like the world, calling out to God in a moment of disaster, then going back to your old ways?

Do not allow your heart to be hardened into one of stone against God. Do not allow sin to be your master. Seek God today while you may. Allow God to change you and make you more like Jesus. Do not make God pour out His wrath on you because of sin.

I pray today that you will follow Jesus with all of your heart; that you will turn away from all sin; that you will not worship any idols in your life; and that you will worship and serve only God.