WHAT IF GOD SHUT DOWN THE WORLD & IN-PERSON WORSHIP JUST BECAUSE OF YOU…

God said it then, and He’s saying it again now…

Isaiah 1:12-13 (NKJV)


12 “When you come to appear before Me,
Who has required this from your hand,
To trample My courts?
13 Bring no more futile[a] sacrifices;
Incense is an abomination to Me.
The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies—
I cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting.

I firmly believe that one of the reasons that God allowed not just the world, but even our ‘worship services to be interrupted is to remind us that He is greater than…

Our ‘Orders of Service’…

Our ‘choirs’ and ‘praise teams’…

Our church hierarchies…

Our biased hermeneutics…

Our advanced seminary degrees and titles…

Our political system…

Our economies…

Our credit system…

Our traditions…

Our constitutions throughout the world…

Our conspiracy theories…

Our institutions…

Our technology…

Our egos…

THE WORLD WE’VE CREATED WITHIN HIS CREATION!

Read the Bible carefully and notice the numerous chances He gave those who call themselves HIS an opportunity to…

STOP.

EXAMINE THEMSELVES.

ADJUST.

REPENT.

This was not directed at THE WORLD…

It was directed at believers.

From the Flood, to Israel’s being exiled, to Yeshua’s sharp rebukes of the religious leaders during His earthly ministry…

It has always been about…

2 Chronicles 7:14 (NKJV)

14 if My people who are (A)called by My name will (B)humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, (C)then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

As much as God loves His chosen people in the Bible, He never co-signed on EVERYTHING they did, but harshly disciplined them when they wrong while the rest of the world, not only watched, but participated in that discipline…

Isaiah 10:5-12 (NKJV)

5 “Woe to Assyria, (A)the rod of My anger
And the staff in whose hand is My indignation.
6 I will send him against (B)an ungodly nation,
And against the people of My wrath
I will (C)give him charge,
To seize the spoil, to take the prey,
And to tread them down like the mire of the streets.
7 (D)Yet he does not mean so,
Nor does his heart think so;
But it is in his heart to destroy,
And cut off not a few nations.
8 (E)For he says,
Are not my princes altogether kings?
9 Is not (F)Calno (G)like Carchemish?
Is not Hamath like Arpad?
Is not Samaria (H)like Damascus?
10 As my hand has found the kingdoms of the idols,
Whose carved images excelled those of Jerusalem and Samaria,
11 As I have done to Samaria and her idols,
Shall I not do also to Jerusalem and her idols?’ ”

12 Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Lord has [a]performed all His work (I)on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, that He will say, (J)“I will punish the fruit of the arrogant heart of the king of Assyria, and the glory of his haughty looks.”

So, I encourage us to make sure we aren’t ‘reading or interpreting the Bible through someone else’s eyes’ constantly seeing where everyone else is wrong rather than examining ourselves…

2 Corinthians 13:5 (NKJV)

5 Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, (A)that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you [a]are (B)disqualified.

Ask yourself…How does what’s going on today fit into God’s eternal perspective?

And, how do I fit in?

Remember this…

Ephesians 6:12 (NIV)

12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood,(A)but against the rulers, against the authorities,(B)against the powers(C) of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.(D)

BE BLESSTIFIED!

THE BLESSING IN LEADING A BUNCH OF LOSERS & MISFITS…

King David was fleeing for his life. He was running from a man to whom he was devoted, King Saul. He had done nothing hurt Saul, but the King knew that God had rejected him and chosen David. So he sought every chance he had to kill him, David, a man who honored him. The fact is that David knew God had chosen him. The Judge and Prophet Samuel had anointed David in 1 Samuel Chapter 16…

1 Samuel 16:12-13 (NIV)

12 So he sent for him and had him brought in. He was glowing with health and had a fine appearance and handsome features. Then the Lord said, “Rise and anoint him; this is the one.” 1So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the presence of his brothers, and from that day on the Spirit of the Lord came powerfully upon David. Samuel then went to Ramah.

How could God be anointed for the throne if God is allowing him to be pursued by the current king…running for his life?

However, David escaped to a cave in Adullum and then this happened…

1 Samuel 22:1-2 (NKJV)

David therefore departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adullam. So when his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. And everyone who was in distress, everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was [a]discontented gathered to him. So he became captain over them. And there were about four hundred men with him.

Notice how The Message Translation says it…

1 Samuel 22 (The Message)

1-2 So David got away and escaped to the Cave of Adullam. When his brothers and others associated with his family heard where he was, they came down and joined him. Not only that, but all who were down on their luck came around—losers and vagrants and misfits of all sorts. David became their leader. There were about four hundred in all.

There were about four hundred men who heard that David had taken refuge in the cave. They weren’t what their current society called ‘the best of men’. They weren’t affluent. They weren’t cultured. And, apparently they weren’t considered to be ‘winners’.

They were in distress…

They were in debt…

They were ‘bitter of soul’…

They were losers…

They were vagrants…

They were misfits…

David, a man chosen by God, did not reject these men. He became their leader. Leaders today don’t want those who are rejected…they want winners. I have heard preacher proclaim that they don’t want to pastor a bunch of ‘broke people’. I have heard national leaders refer to others as ‘losers’. Coaches want the best athletes on their team. Corporate leaders want the best working for them. Everybody wants winners. No one wants to be the one left after the team captains have chosen who they want on their team.

But it was these losers and misfits who fought with David down his difficult road to kingship, until Saul died and he became king of Hebron and then all of Israel.

Those 400 losers were a blessing to David at his lowest point. David was a blessing to them at their lowest point.

Just because ‘the world’ sees someone as a ‘loser’ doesn’t mean that God does!

Just because they’re a ‘loser’ doesn’t mean they didn’t fight valiantly.

Just because they’re in debt doesn’t mean they weren’t wise with their money.

Just because they’re ‘bitter of soul’ doesn’t mean that the world hasn’t given them good reason to be.

Just because they’re considered to be ‘misfits’ doesn’t mean they are capable of greatness with the right leadership.

If you’re a leader, don’t ever look down on those who God has trusted you enough to send to you. Don’t consider yourself TOO GOOD to lead anyone.

If you consider yourself a ‘loser’ or a ‘misfit’, don’t consider yourself NOT GOOD ENOUGH to be used by God.

Remember this…

1 Corinthians 1:27 (NKJV)

27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty;

Never despise ‘small people’ or small beginnings…

Zechariah 4:10 (NLT)

10 Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in Zerubbabel’s hand.”

BE BLESSTIFIED!

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