Thursday, April 21, 2011
Have you ever wondered how God feels about people that are so wicked in our world today? I’m sure you have come across people who are going in the opposite direction of what God wants and they seem to be unaware of the destructive path they are making in their wake. It also seems that at times they are getting away with their destructive actions with no negative consequences. We could name a few in our generation that fit into this category. Adolf Hitler. Jack the Ripper. Manson. Child Molesters. Physical abusers. Emotional abusers. Murderers. The list goes on. What is God’s perspective of these kinds of people with obvious actions that turn our stomachs to think of their actions.
The person I read about today is named Manasseh, king of Judah for 55 years. On March 29, 2011 I commented on Manasseh and his relationship with his father Hezekiah and that parental business can have a negative effect on our children’s paths as they move into adulthood. Today, my focus is on Manasseh and his choice to humble himself. He was indeed one of the most wicked kings in the land of Judah. He sacrificed his children in the fire, practiced divination and witchcraft, and consulted mediums and spiritists, among other things. It says, “Manasseh led Judah and the people of Jerusalem astray, so that they did more evil than the nations the Lord had destroyed before the Israelites.” (II Chron. 33:9) Do you get the picture of the kind of wickedness that Manasseh brought to his nation? He can be put into the same camp as those we despise and want God to snuff out.
God tried to get his attention, but Manasseh wouldn’t listen, so God brought the Assyrian army and took him away. “In his distress, he (Manasseh) sought the favor of the lord his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his ancestors. And when he prayed to Him, the Lord was moved by his entreaty and listened to his plea, so he brought him back to Jerusalem and to his kingdom.” (II Chron. 33:13) True humbleness for what we have done wrong is one of the keys for getting God’s attention and causing Him to listen to our prayers. It is looking at our own sin and not pointing out what needs to be done in the lives of others. We look at obvious destructive sins of others, but our own sin stops us from having fellowship with the Lord. It is in our humbling ourselves before God that we can experience his Grace and forgiveness for what we have done.
On this journey we can go astray from the road that God wants us to take and is in our humbling ourselves and recognizing our destructive actions and attitudes that God will listen and put us back on His road for our lives.
Kevin and I were just talking about his last night. I have a cousin who has made some self choices and greatly hurt his family and another family. In our sadness/condemnation or the situation I said to Kevin you know our own sin comes from the same place selfishness….there is actually very few degrees of if any of difference.
You are so right. Sometimes we put ourselves in the place of the pharisee and compare out sin to the tax collector rather than seeing that our sin separates us equally from God. Thanks fir the comment
James S. Gorton