Monday, June 27, 2011

Don't Leave God in the Valley

2 Chronicles 25:15
The anger of the Lord burned against Amaziah, and he sent a prophet to him, who said, “why do you consult this people’s gods, which could not save their own people from your hand?”

Have you ever looked at someone else’s life and how they have failed in one area or another, saying to yourself, “I would never do that?” We have many examples of scandals, failures, and missteps that could last us a lifetime just this year. You would think that with all of the dramas unfolding around us and in the news that we would be wiser than to follow the footsteps of the foolish. The bible says that the steps of a righteous man are ordered but we have to choose to go where he guides us.

All throughout the old testament there is discussion of the Kings of Israel and the Kings of Judah how either they followed in the footsteps of David who was after God’s own heart or they followed the footsteps of Ahab who worshipped false gods. It was amazing how God kept intervening for both Judah and Israel even when they were not faithful to him. What’s even more amazing is that after God gives them the victory over their enemies they still go back to worship the gods of the people they defeated.

Amaziah, King of Judah was outnumbered by the Edomites but yet God still gives him the victory in the Valley of Salt. It’s ironic that God would give him the victory in the Valley of Salt because that’s exactly what we are supposed to be as Christians. Salt. Salt is supposed to transform not conform. Salt is supposed to preserve not spoil. Amazaiah, instead of giving God the glory for the victory, conforms by taking their gods and spoiling the favor on his life.

That doesn’t make sense to me, why would you take the gods of the people you just defeated? If they didn’t work for them why should they work for him?

1. Maybe he saw all of the previous victories that this army had and thought he could have their previous favor not realizing he had everything he needed to win.

2. Maybe he saw all of their riches but didn’t look at the fact that they a soulless people.

We have to be careful taking back to our homes the gods of defeated people. How do we do that?

1. Don’t take the values of people who are lost themselves. When you can’t see any spiritual fruit from “successful people” be careful living like they live.

2. Material wealthy does not equal abundant life. When God told Amaziah that he didn’t need the men he had paid to go to war, he asked him what about the money I paid them? The Prophet said, “God will give you more than that back.” Don’t worry about losing money when you’re doing God’s will, he will give it back.

3. If you listened to God for the victory, make sure you listen to him after you win. Amaziah listened to God in the Valley of the Salt but he refused to listen after he got the victory.

4. Don’t get cocky after your victory and fight an unnecessary war. Amaziah tried to fight Israel and was defeated because he was following the gods of the people he defeated. Defeated gods can’t help you after you abandon the true and living God.

Dear God,

Help me to hear your voice today and not my ego. Help me to hold true to your voice and not their values. Help me to be Salt in the Valley today by transforming my environment and not conforming to it. Save me from cultural corruption and instead preserve what is good. Thank you for the victory and not giving up on me.

In Jesus Name,

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