Saturday, March 16, 2013

DAGON FALLEN

Suggested Reading: 1 Samuel 5-6

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

This is some of the landscape that the Children of Israel of would have beheld as they sojourned in the desert before entering the Promised Land. This is Timna National Park in Southern Israel.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: 1 Samuel 6:20

And the men of Beth Shemesh said, “Who is able to stand before this holy Lord God? And to whom shall it go up from us?”

In today’s reading we learn of the different ways of handling the Ark of the Covenant. First, the Philistines of Ashdod offended God, and then the Israelites of Beth Shemesh, who knew better, treated the Ark as an article of curiosity, failing to respect the symbol of God’s presence as Moses had instructed them. The Philistines may have thought they were honouring the God of Israel by placing the Ark in the Temple of Dagon, but instead they abused Him. They failed to understand that God does not share worship with an idol. We can look up in our Bibles the proper way to handle the Ark. The people to whom the cattle brought the ark may not have had immediate access to the scrolls with the instructions. Ignorance, in this case, was no excuse.
We have the assurance that since Jesus came, we can stand before God with reverence, worshipping Him. We must not take Him for granted or presume upon His mercy. It’s true that Jesus changed our approach to God. The excruciating suffering and death of Christ is ample proof that our holy God is outraged by sin in all its forms. We throw ourselves on His grace and mercy.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I come boldly to Your throne of grace. According to Your Word in Hebrews 4:16, I receive mercy and find grace in my time of need. Please help me to always approach You with all reverence and total respect, knowing that Jesus, our great High Priest, has gone before me with His blood sprinkled on the Mercy Seat of the Ark in the heavens. In His Name I pray. Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I lived on my uncle’s farm for six years while my Dad was away from our family during WW 2. Three years after his return, Dad accepted a call to two rural congregations filled with farmers. I spent much time on their farms, learning all about cattle. Then I worked full time on farms for five summers. I know first-hand that the natural way for cows that have just given birth to a calf is to remain beside that calf. What we read about today is not natural but supernatural. God always retains the right to intervene, changing patterns of behaviour to bring about His purposes. Animals are not made in God’s image as humans are. They function by pre-programmed instinct. I’ve learned that I am not like that. I must deliberately give my will over to God’s will, obeying His instructions. When I decide to follow Him, I know that supernatural provision for my journey will be provided as I go.

Yours for decisions to follow God’s instructions more closely,

David

The Ark of the Covenant, as depicted in a replica of the Old Testament Tabernacle at Timna Park in Israel.

12 thoughts on “Saturday, March 16, 2013

  1. “We cannot see the forest for all the trees” nor the air that we breath … if not for the Holy Spirit and scripture revealing the nature of God and Christ, how do we possibly know His mighty authority and grace. So fleetingly do our weeks and moments pass! Our time is not as the large stone of Abel, but weaved with encounters among souls, living in purpose for which we are born. Praise to our Father, His Divine Son and Holy Spirit!

  2. Thank you David for today’s reading. A great reminder that Our Holy and Righteous God does not share His Glory with anyone. Let us look at our lives and be careful that nothing in our lives comes before our worship of Him. Thanking JESUS for His sacrifice at Calvary on our behalf. It’s awesome to be a child of God. Wishing fellow bloggers a wonderful day in His presence. Praying you David and Norma-Jean will have a restful day.

  3. Reverence, respect, honour, gratitude and obedience are not words we often hear in the popular culture of today; in fact, rebellion, independence, selfishness, pride and arrogance are the order of the day it seems. Jesus came to teach us a better way, a way which leads not only to righteousness here on earth, but a road-map that all Christians may follow unto eternal life. From our reading today, the people of Israel wandered from God and ended up treating the Ark as novelty. I ask, what about our Church today? Have we not wandered far from God and treated His Church as a novelty? I don’t wish to speak harshly, but I see many a similarity between a disobedient people of ancient Israel and that of the modern Church. Have we too lost our way? Has the Holy Spirit largely fled from our assemblies? I ask you, where is the power? Where is the sacrifice? These are questions that perhaps we need to ask of ourselves individually and corporately particularly as we approach Good Friday and Easter Sunday as we remember and reverence our Lord’s great sacrifice on the cross and his rising to newness of life.

  4. The ark of the covenant was used in 1 Samuel: 5-6 as a teaching tool and reminder about needing to respect the symbol of God’s presence, which was not to be taken lightly as the consequences revealed.

    Thank you, David, for articulating the necessity of deliberately giving our will over to God

    • … continuing our worship and thanks to Jesus, and not taking for granted the grace we have been afforded by His sacrifice. I have never heard it said so well that the suffering Jesus took on the cross for our sakes is proof that God is outraged by our sin. Indeed, our goal must be to live by the examples set before us in God’s manual of the Holy Bible, the Ten Commandments, and Jesus’ human teaching of forgiveness and love for one another.

      Wishing fellow saints a blessed day, and peace and comfort to David and Norma Jean Mainse!

  5. Yes, have we lost our deep respect for the house of God and treat the Holy Spirit lightly. We talked in our missionary meeting yesterday about the fact that there was no open vision in Eli’s day probably because his son’s were disrespectful and even vile in the house of the Lord. Great blogs today, David and fellow bloggers. Am praying that God will avert this storm coming so I can get to my appointment in St John next Wednesday. God bless.

  6. Blessings to you and Norma Jean, When l read your description of the excruciating pain Jesus suffered on the cross to pay the price for my sins, l had to bow my head to say thank you Jesus. Being a child of God is such a great honour and we have to constantly remind ourselves whose we are. Life can be so distracting and demanding and l am comforted by the fact that God looks on our hearts and precious Holy Spirit prompts us as we go along saying “This is the way, walk ye in it” We have so much to learn and be thankful for!

  7. Thank you Beverlee. I just heard a wonderful testimony of healing by a South African lady at the Healing School by Pastor Chris. It was so real and anointed. Could it be that the Lord still wants to heal me and sent a storm to divert my path; and for you too, David and other Bible readers in need of a healing. Feel a need to wait on the Lord today.

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