Sunday, 21 July 2013

Dragon Slayer

It was a sermon I heard when I was a third year student at university during 2003. This has stuck with me ever since and I often refer to it to others, but also internalise it. Something learned, I have to share.

In the book of Joshua 11 God tells this Israelites that He will lead them in a battle. He will help them destroy the armies of all the kings that inhabit the land. Joshua and his army have to plunder the cities, hamstrung their horses and burn their chariots. He had to kill everyone, including the kings.

And so Joshua did. Every battle was won since Joshua obeyed everything the Lord told him. Verse 23: So Joshua took the entire land, just as the Lord had directed Moses, and he gave it as an inheritance to Israel according to their tribal divisions. Then the land had rest from war. This was, apart from verse 22: No Anakites were left in Israelite territory; only in Gaza, Gath and Ashdod did any survive.

Was this part of the plan?

If you read the entire book you will learn that the people who lived in the hill country of Gath were giants. Where else in the Bible do we learn about giants? Yes, you guessed correctly: Golliath, the giant who joined the Philistines in battle against the Israelites many years later: 1 Samuel 17. In verse 4 you will learn that he was a decedent from Gath...

Is this not irony at its best??? Years later another giant appears, again against the Israelites, again at war. BUT, that is the whole point! Had Joshua and his army killed the giants during their time, their kids would not have to battle against them again.

What can we learn from this thousands of years later? Simply this: deal with your issues, your sins. Make an end to them before you pass them on to the next generation. Let us not allow our kids to face the same problems we face today.

Slay those giants, before they steal from you!

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Abraham - Father of the faith #4 (the ultimate!)


Hebrews 11:8 - By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.

 

By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.

 

And by faith even Sarah, who was past childbearing age, was enabled to bear children because she considered him faithful who had made the promise. And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.

 

By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death.

 

Is there anything else I should say regarding Abraham? He laid a foundation for us. There is even a childhood song regarding Father Abraham and his many sons, I am one of them and so are you...

 

The last part that the author writes is fascinating, though. Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death. I know no man that would do such a thing. I couldn’t. how then did Abraham know that this is what was going to happen? Did he know, or was it only faith in God? Did he maybe know the Lords will that well?

 

I don’t have the answers, but I do know that I should trust the Lord more often, and listen to His voice, in order to ensure that I too get to a point in my walk with Him that I can KNOW.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Noah - Father of the faith #3

Hebrews 11: 6 - By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that is in keeping with faith.

In Genesis 5 the Bible tells us about Noah. Verse 29 - And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath cursed.

Genesis 6 verse 8 -  But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God. Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. So God said to Noah, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth.  So make yourself an ark of cypress wood; make rooms in it and coat it with pitch inside and out. This is how you are to build it: The ark is to be three hundred cubits long, fifty cubits wide and thirty cubits high. Make a roof for it, leaving below the roof an opening one cubit high all around. Put a door in the side of the ark and make lower, middle and upper decks. I am going to bring floodwaters on the earth to destroy all life under the heavens, every creature that has the breath of life in it. Everything on earth will perish. But I will establish my covenant with you, and you will enter the ark—you and your sons and your wife and your sons’ wives with you. You are to bring into the ark two of all living creatures, male and female, to keep them alive with you. Two of every kind of bird, of every kind of animal and of every kind of creature that moves along the ground will come to you to be kept alive. You are to take every kind of food that is to be eaten and store it away as food for you and for them.”

An interesting story indeed. Just think about it, Noah did something for which, I am sure, he was laughed at, joked about and pretty much everyone thought he was crazy. If you know how the story ends you would know that Noah and his family is saved from the flood and all animals were kept alive.

But how/why?

Verse 22 has the secret to that success: Noah did everything just as God commanded him.

Just as we should...

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