For You formed my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Marvelous are Your works, and I know this very well. Psalm 139:13-14
There is a saying that history repeats itself. The reaction to adversity always reveals the strengths and weaknesses of a person’s character. Human behavior is predictable. From the beginning of time, we have failed to comply with God’s laws. The Bible provides a perfect historical overview of the weaknesses of humanity and identifies those who have failed to obey God’s commands by living holy and righteous lives.
Refer to your Bibles to follow along with the events of Exodus chapters 31-32. When Moses, the appointed leader of the Nation of Israel, went up on the mountain to commune with God and to receive the Ten Commandments, the faithless revolted and demanded that Aaron provide an idol god that they could see and touch.
Aaron, the brother of Moses, exhibited his fear of the people when he immediately complied with their request to make a golden calf. Aaron answered them, “Take off the gold earrings that your wives, your sons, and your daughters are wearing, and bring them to me.” Exodus 32:2
These are the same people who were delivered from slavery and witnessed the miracle of the Red Sea with parted waters standing in place as they marched through on dry land. God met their basic needs by giving manna which fell from heaven six days a week, along with a double portion on Friday to prepare the meal for that day and the Sabbath. Still, they were willing to trade their freedom and the Promised Land to return to the harsh conditions of enslavement to satisfy their appetites for food and sinful activities.
Many of the Israelites had hidden practices, they worshipped God, yet, they secretly participated in the pagan rituals of sacrifice and idol worship. When Moses journeyed to Mount Sinai, Exodus 31, the people became bold in their wickedness and demanded a tangible idol. With Moses away, they could finally relax and enjoy the life that they desired to live.
Moses, dedicated himself to be a willing vessel, a man of God to lead the Israelites out of bondage and into the Promised Land. Sin not only corrupts us, but it also has the consequences of causing the sinner to become short-sighted. We can not engage in doing wrong and think about what is right at the same time. How could they not have realized that the Omniscient God was fully aware of the situation?
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go down, because your people, whom you brought up out of Egypt, have become corrupt. 8 They have been quick to turn away from what I commanded them and have made themselves an idol cast in the shape of a calf. They have bowed down to it and sacrificed to it and have said, ‘These are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.’ ”
Satan revels in the fact that many who believe in God do not study the Bible. He is aware that believers exist who acknowledge the power of God but do not recognize that he is the Master Deceiver. “When the day came for the heavenly beings to appear before the Lord, Satan was there among them? The Lord asked him, “What have you been doing?” Satan answered, “I have been walking here and there, roaming around the earth.” Job 1:6-7. Yes, Satan does have power, he unleashes the diseases, causes the chaos, and incites the rebelliousness to denounce God’s truth.
Satan was Lucifer, and as a fallen angel, he and his legion of evil angels, have the power to observe all humanity. Our temptations are custom-made to make us fall into the abyss of sin. Our sinful desires seem to crop up from nowhere. Temptation has its roots in the things that we like, the spoken words that we laugh at, and the indecision to take a firm stand for right against wrong.
Read Genesis 3:1-6. Our temptations are subtle. It can begin with something as innocent as playing an online game that involves slot machines. We rationalize to justify that it’s just a game to pass the time. Non-threatening fun activities have the ability to become a gateway that opens the door to more powerful habits, causing us to compromise godly standards and to lose our way. There are no hidden agendas with God. For all that is secret will eventually be brought into the open, and everything that is concealed will be brought to light and made known to all. Luke 8:17. Secret desires and habits eventually manifest and the truth is revealed much to our dismay.
God allows certain events to occur in our lives, and in our world. If it were possible, Satan would destroy all who profess Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. Praise God that He will always be constrained by the power of God. We must endure suffering. Without tests, and trials we would take the credit for our righteousness by faith which is a gift from God. We have the ability to live holy by faithfully believing in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Satan accused God of showing favoritism to Job. “Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. 10 “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.” Job 1:9-11
The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man, himself do not lay a finger.” Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord. Job 1:12. If Satan had no boundaries, he would have caused Job’s death. We should whisper a prayer of thanksgiving when we study the Book of Job that God is indeed a merciful God.
Do not be surprised by the rebelliousness and the revolutionary behaviors of protestors or the cowering of the politicians who are retracting and modifying their state’s Stay-at-Home ordinances. They are taking a stand for the preservation of the economy and to make sure that those protesting will vote for their re-election.
Although we should remain aware of current events, we do not have time to get distracted by the foolishness of this world. Use your time wisely, prepare yourself as if Jesus is coming today. God has given us time to modify our unruly behaviors and to develop a “new normal” of maintaining communion with him. Every new day is full of God’s grace and mercies that have been gifted to each of us. Proclaim your love for God by having meaningful worship at least twice every day. The peace and joy that comes from our Heavenly Father are everlasting and not dependent on changing circumstances.
With God, we can win the battle over sin. “Even now,” declares the LORD, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning. Joel 2:12. Time is limited and biblical prophecies are being fulfilled.
Prepare for a glorious life that is coming very soon for the faithful. And in that day it will be said, “Surely this is our God; we have waited for Him, and He has saved us. This is the LORD for whom we have waited. Let us rejoice and be glad in His Salvation.” Isaiah 25:9
Bible Reading: Revelation 21
Prayer: God, we ask for the strength to change our present way of life. We desire to live in the New Heaven and New Earth with you forever. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.
© Sonya Johnson Ruiz 2020, No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted for commercial purposes without the written permission of the author.