Beware the Full FocusJuly 9, 2014 at 10:20 am | Posted in The Fives | 1 Comment
Tags: Cinco de Mayo Bible lessons, Cinco de Mayo devotions, evangelism, Ezekiel 5, Great Commission, Israel, Jerusalem, Matthew 28, surrounded
Jerusalem was in a location chosen by God, yet surrounded by nations of people that did not believe what His people believed.
Thus saith the Lord God; This is Jerusalem: I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries that are round about her.
This was a dangerous and precarious position, but it was also a great opportunity.
In a world of merchant trading and traveling, Jerusalem could profit from her role as a major trade route, and could benefit commercially. More importantly, however, Jerusalem could share the truth of the One True God with her visitors and surrounding neighbors.
The danger was also twofold. Being landlocked amidst hostile pagans, Jerusalem would have to remain vigilant on all sides. Again, though, more importantly, rather than influencing her neighbors with the truth, there was always the danger of lapsing into the idolatry and sinful culture that beset her on every front. Sadly, this is precisely what happened – to an even greater degree.
And she hath changed my judgments into wickedness more than the nations, and my statutes more than the countries that are round about her: for they have refused my judgments and my statutes, they have not walked in them.
Christians today face the same predicament. We are ensconced in a world hostile to our Lord and skeptical of His ways. We are set forth with a mission to evangelize the unbelievers, but we are also a curiosity piece when we consistently practice what we believe. Will we succumb to the influence and wilt under the withering focus of those who think us old-fashioned, foolish, or judgmental? If we do, we are subject to embarrassing rebuke and public humiliation.
Therefore thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I, even I, am against thee, and will execute judgments in the midst of thee in the sight of the nations.
Or will we shine brightly with the light of the Savior even as the darkness encroaches ever more tightly upon us? Will we speak boldly and live with integrity so that we become a refuge for the heathens when they see the futility of fighting against the real God? If so, we will know the blessing of the presence of the Lord in our lives.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.