Monday, 10 December 2012

RESPONSE TO MERCY

2 Chronicles 34:31 – then the king stood in his place and made a covenant before the Lord , to follow the Lord, and to keep His commandments and His testimonies and His statues with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of the covenant that were written in this book

Bible Studies: 2 Chronicles 34:1-33

Josiah was only eight years old when he became king in Jerusalem. Imagine an eight year old child, becoming the president of USA or any other country? What does an eight year old know? What experiences of life has he got? Mercy gives one an opportunity he does not deserve. The woman caught in adultery in John 8:1-11 did not deserve mercy according to the Law of Moses. Actually allowing her to live is a sin, but when they brought her to Jesus, He had mercy on her and gave her life back. If not for mercy, the Leper in Luke 5:12-13 would have been stoned to death. According to the Law of Moses lepers are not allowed in towns except they are passing through and to do that they need to inform the community priory to passing. The man risked his life to come and meet Jesus and the Lord had mercy on him and healed him. Through the tender mercies of Jesus, one of the two criminals received salvation on the cross, Luke 23:39-42. Lamentations 3:22 says it is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. Out of mercy Moses saw God and lived, Exodus 33:17-33.

To appreciate God’s mercy, Josiah went out and completely destroyed everything (idols and gods of the land) that could come between him and this merciful God. God was impressed with the way this young king responded to His mercies, so He promised him that all his life he will never face any challenge or see calamity. Josiah knew what it meant to spend a year without facing challenges and now the Lord was promising that all his life he will neither face any challenge not see calamity. This king decided to make a covenant before God that he will serve God like no one had ever done. He will spend for God and be spent by God. He promised to live holy. In Judges 15:11- Judges 16:1, three thousand men of Judah (brothers of Samson) bound him with a rope and gave him to the Philistines. The enemies with-in caught him and handed him over to the enemy with-out to kill. Out of mercy, the Lord delivered him that day. Instead of thanking God for the victory, he began to question God about his thirst. Out of mercy the Lord provided water again. Immediately he drank the water and was satisfied, he went straight into the house of a prostitute to celebrate his victory. How are we responding to God’s mercy today? The fact that we are alive it is by His mercy. Do we wake up to thank God for the gift of life or we just go about our business. Our salvation how do we take it, do we bring others to Christ, invite people to church or just watch them on Sunday go to play football or sleep of all day long? That business or job, do we tithe on our earning or just spend everything? .The good health He gave to us, do we use it to party and fornicate or join the workers in the church and work for Him in His vine yard? The way we respond to God’s mercy will determine the level of His mercies we will get. The next time the enemy caught Samson they plucked out his eyes immediately, Judges 16:21. Actually he did not leave the camp of the Philistine alive .Not even a single soul mourned Samson but till date it is a custom in Israel to lament about the death of Josiah.

KEY QUESTION: How are you responding to God’s mercies over your life and family?

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