Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Watch God Do It!

1 Samuel 6:8-9
New International Version (NIV)
8 Take the ark of the Lord and put it on the cart, and in a chest beside it put the gold objects you are sending back to him as a guilt offering. Send it on its way, 9 but keep watching it. If it goes up to its own territory, toward Beth Shemesh, then the Lord has brought this great disaster on us. But if it does not, then we will know that it was not his hand that struck us but that it happened to us by chance.”

There is a connection to what we hold on to and what we release that determines what God decides to do in our lives. Sometimes, what we hold on to brings calamity and what we release can bring healing but you have to keep watching to see God move on your behalf.

The Philistines had taken that which did not belong to them. They had taken the Ark of the Covenant which represented the Presence of God for the people of Israel. The Ark was Holy and was only to be handled by the priests and the people who were in covenant with God. As a result of it being mishandled by the Philistines, God had infected the Philistines with a curse of Tumors and Rats.

When we mishandle the presence of God it can negatively impact our lives. When we treat the presence of God with contempt our lives can be cursed and not blessed.

The Philistines decided it was time to send the Ark of God back but they had to send back a gold guilt offering with it. They sent 5 gold rats and 5 gold tumors symbolic of what was eating at them and stealing their prosperity. What are some of the rats and tumors you need to release out of your life? What rat has been allowed to eat away at your self-esteem? What tumor is soaking up all of your Godly resources because it’s been allowed to set up inside you? If we are going to be healed then we have to release:
  1. What does not belong to you. You can’t hold on to that which does not belong to you? God even warned the Israelites when they held onto that which is Holy to God, their tithe, and did not give it to him they would experience a curse. We can’t steal from God and be blessed.
  2. We need to release grateful giver and not a guilty giver. The Philistines sent the Ark away with guilt offerings of 5 gold rats and tumors. Since Jesus came into our lives he removed our guilt. We don’t have to give guilt offerings but we should give offerings because we are grateful. 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 Remember: A stingy planter gets a stingy crop; a lavish planter gets a lavish crop. I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your own mind what you will give. That will protect you against sob stories and arm-twisting. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving.
  3. Keep Watching your gift. The Philistines hitched the ark to Cows that had never plowed and had just given birth. They knew if these cows pulled this Ark back to the Israelites on their own then this had to be God. When you give your offering, just sit back and Watch God work. When you give for the right reason and to the right place your gift has to get to where it’s supposed to go.

2 Corinthians 9:12 This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God.

Dear God,

I’m waiting and watching, knowing that which I’ve given to you will accomplish what I sent it out to do. It’s not by chance but it’s by faith that I release my gifts to you and I believe it will come back to me, pressed down, shaken together and running over.

In Jesus Name,

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