Friday, March 9, 2012

Lessons from Psalm 78

Listen to God to learn hidden lessons, the parables that can't be understood without paying attention!Teach these truths to your children, and teach them to teach their children.Tell of his power and his mighty miracles, so that each generation can set their hope anew on God.Remember his miracles and obey his commands-it's that simple.Teach them not to be stubborn, rebellious, and unfaithful, refusing to give their hearts to God.Remember the warriors of Ephriam, who though fully armed chose not to enter into battle. They turned their backs on God when the day of battle came. They refused to live by his laws, forsaking the ways of obedience, faith, and trust. They chose not to confront their enemies but gave in to them. They forgot the former miracles God had done for their ancestors.But God has not forgotten. He went with the people through the Red Sea. He split the water for them and led them through. He splits our circumstances and leads us through. In the wilderness of suffering he splits our hearts, and living water begins to flow. Even as God passed through the offering of Abram, he passes through our offering of ourselves as a living sacrifice.This is well pleasing in his sight!We must not refuse to battle the enemy. When we give into sin, we are refusing to battle the enemy. We are being like the warriors of Ephriam who turned their backs on God. We are always faced with that choice. Turn to God or turn away! Trust or rebel. Do we test God in our hearts and demand what our flesh wants? Or, do we ask him for what we need? Do we speak against God and complain, or do we praise him and make known our needs without complaint? Do we accuse him of performing miracles in the past but not today? Believe that God cares for you today and trust him!He can open the doors of heaven, he did it in the wilderness! He rained food down upon them. He gave them the bread of heaven (the Word of God?). They ate the food of angels, all they could hold! He let them satiate their greed and they stuffed themselves to judgement. They kept on sinning, they refused to believe his miracles, and so their lives ended up in failure and years of terror!They forgot about his power and how he rescued them from their enemies. They forgot his miraculous signs and wonders. Remember them!Ten times he judged the enemy, but the enemy refused to budge, and yet God was at work even as the circumstances of the people grew worse. But he led his own like a flock guiding them safely through. He kept them so that they were not afraid. Do not fear, perfect love casts out fear! The sea closed on their enemies and it will close on your circumstances. Just walk through the circumstance and let him bring you to the promised land, the land that he will win for you! He will bring your inheritance and settle you in the home he has prepared for you.God does this for you. Do you continually test his patience? Do you turn your back on him and refuse to follow his decrees? You need simply to turn to God, embrace the battle, simply hear his voice and respond in obedience. Don't bow down to other Gods, things that feel good but bear the fruit of shame and guilt. Embrace his Presence, not the things that turn his Presence away.The Lord will rise up like a mighty man, like a warrior is he. He will rout your enemies and send them to eternal shame. The Lord does not choose those who turn their backs on him, but those who turn to him in faith and trust and embrace the battle for holiness! He is building you into a towering sanctuary of his Presence, solid and enduring. Run to the battle, do not turn away!

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