I would never...
What is your I would never? The thing so horrible, so against everything you value and believe, that you think you'd never be capable of doing it.
When we read Scripture the Lord is so generous in sharing His truth with us. He actually illuminates our minds by His Spirit helping us not only understand but makes it hit us deep down. Connecting with the Lord through His Word is exhilarating and humbling at the same time.
I'm slowly making my way through 2 Kings using the 2 Kings Journal-which helps me connect with the Lord in this deep connection type of way. And this morning, through the life of Amaziah, the Lord's warnings bring me to my knees.
Amaziah's dad was tragically murdered by his servants. After Amaziah was firmly established as the new King, he had the servants put to death and began his reign walking with and doing what was right in the Lord's eyes. He began to defeat enemies because he obeyed the Lord, "for God has the power to help or to make one stumble" (2 Chron.25:8) even when it was hard, even when people turned against him to the point of wanting to destroy him. Such a great example!
But then, sadly it seems he gets super cocky. After defeating the Edomites, he took their gods and set them up to worship them. What!? That makes no sense! (Arrogance leads us to do crazy things.) Winning this one battle led to an outrageously inflated view of himself that led him to take on Israel where he was crushed and ultimately died.
Before his attempt to take on Israel, something more than God wanted for him, God generously sent a prophet to him to tell him not to do it. However Amaziah's arrogance blinded him and he interrupted the prophet and wouldn't even listen to him. Because of just one win, his kingdom was defeated.
The potential to become an Amaziah is a temptation for anyone. So here are 6 nuggets of truth to help us not walk the road of Amaziah.
6 Truths from 2 Kings 14 (& 2 Chron. 25) that Keep Us Humble
1. Little compromises lead to bigger compromises.
Bringing the idols of the Edomites home with him, led Amaziah to set them up and then start worshipping them.
2. When you speak truth to arrogant people they may get so mad at you they want to destroy you.
The prophet was sent by God and spoke truth the Amaziah but because he was blinded by arrogance, he threatened to kill him and sent him away. But better to be dead and pleasing to the Lord then a King stepping into his downfall and bringing others with him.
3. God doesn't withhold good from us, even when He is angry with us.
God was angry with Amaziah because of his sin of pride. But God still did what was best for Amaziah. He still initiated communicating and speaking truth offering grace.
4. God has the power to help or to make one stumble.
God could have helped Amaziah but since Amaziah refused listening to the Lord, let alone calling out to Him, He let Him stumble.
5. An arrogant leader leads to downfall.
Amaziah chose to listen to his own counselors that told him what he wanted to hear over what God had to say.
6. Just one win can cause a humble person to become arrogant enough to turn from the Lord.
This is the scariest one. At times it seems easier to trust and call out to the Lord when life is hard. In the victory, it is easy to forget Him. We are a susceptible people, taking credit where credit is not due. The need to continually lean into the Lord's strength, giving Him credit for everything we have and are will keep us from becoming inflated after wins.
We are far more capable of doing the very thing we think we'd never do. And God's Spirit is far more capable of helping us to stay strong by the strength of His Spirit than we'd ever dare dream.
Oh Lord! We are so weak and vulnerable as people. We so desperately need you. Thank you for being accessible and generous and not withholding loe or good from us, even when we don't deserve it. Help us stay humble, even in wins.
Laura, the founder of Missional Women is married and has six kids, two of whom are adopted. Laura and her husband have been missionaries to college students for 14 years serving with Master Plan Ministries where she is the Women's Development Coordinator. Laura has authored 5 books, including an award winning 12 week Bible Study on First Samuel, Beholding Him, Becoming Missional, Reach; How to Use Your Social Media Influence for the Glory of God, A Devotional Journey through Judges, and Discover God's Calling for Your Life. Most recently her resource for Bible studies, The Connect Cards was released by Cru Press. You can find her on facebook, twitter, pinterest, youtube, instagram, periscope, blab and her author site.
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