It was a dark period in the history of God’s people. The once strong nation divided after King Solomon’s death. The 10 tribes to the north became known as Israel and the 2 tribes to the south were Judah.
This sad state of affairs lasted slightly more than 200 years. In all, there were 38 kings but only 5 – all of them in Judah – were God-fearing, good leaders. God sent prophets repeatedly to call the people to repent and come back into their covenant relationship with Him but they stubbornly refused.
Israel experienced judgment at the hands of the Babylonian Empire. They were conquered and led away into exile. Judah rallied for a time because of placing their trust in God, but another bad king once again led to moral decay and chaos.
When Judah finally experienced judgment at the hands of the Assyrians, it was a two-year ordeal. When the final assault was at hand, King Zedekiah asked Jeremiah to make one more appeal to God. Jeremiah was straightforward in his message from God – it’s too late!
King Zedekiah, along with all of Judah, persistently ignored God’s prophets who warned about the consequences of unfaithfulness to God. They refused to honor their covenant relationship with God and yet when the chips were down, King Zedekiah wanted God’s help.
Stop and think about that for a moment!
They refused to do life according to God’s directives, but still wanted – perhaps even expected – God to come to their rescue. Does that sound at all familiar to you? It does to me.
I think it describes much of what is called Christianity today.
We participate in church life and even other token activities identified as what it means to be a Christian; but then we do life pretty much how we want. Yet when our back is up against the wall we want and even expect God to come through for us and bless our agenda.
And I’m just as guilty as the next person.
Bob Yawberg, one of my mentors, kept a journal throughout his nearly 40 years of ministry. The simple title was “Saying Yes to God.”
Lord, forgive us for abusing the covenant relationship with You that cost Jesus His very life.
May we recognize that You are the center of life and may we say “Yes” to doing life with You.
© Richard Alvey and iLife Journey, 2012. All rights reserved.