Bible Readers

With Pastor Dave Roussel

Tag: Psalms 52

Creation Itself is getting Sick

February 22 – Today’s Readings – Leviticus 16-18 and Psalms 52

In Chapter 18 of Leviticus we find a most fascinating statement – the land “vomited out the nations”. I get the impression that the sins mentioned in this section of Scripture were so contrary to what God intended in creation that creation itself was made sick by all of it.

What were the sins revealed? – Marrying 2 sisters – Sleeping with your father’s wife – Lying with a man as one lies with a woman – Sleeping with your neighbor’s wife – Offering your children to be burned to death on the altar of Molech – Making sacrifices in the open fields!

These folk were more or less like people in our society! In our nation, we legalize and even promote sexual sin and call it a “new normal” or a “personal choice”. We make divorce as easy as marriage, we promote and pay for abortion, we legalize euthanasia, and think nothing of adultery and rebellion against God’s laws.

Somehow, in the mysterious workings of creation, there is an almost mystical connection between increased sin in the land resulting in the land and the atmosphere suffering and becoming ill.

As a side note, God never said that we were free to abuse this beautiful planet but that we should be good managers of it. (Genesis 9: 2-3) Whenever sin increases in a nation, the Earth itself suffers from the ravages of man’s abuses. We, as Christians need to be part of the crowd that desires good management of Earth’s resources – not part of the crowd that seeks only has contempt and disregard for this Earth God gave us. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not a “greenpeace” guy – nor do I hug trees – I just want sanity to be part of our stewardship of God’s Earth. Let’s increase funding to fight more forest fires and decrease C02 emissions – they are the major problem!

It is clear in this passage that God makes a direct link between the inherited sinfulness of mankind and the judgment of various kinds of sins. The point to be considered here is that there is eternal judgment as well as direct immediate results for certain sinful lifestyle choices. If sins increase in a nation, that nation will not longer be allowed to exist. The ground (creation) itself will reject its people and God will no longer keep quiet about the issues. The eternal result however, will be far worse. We must keep speaking sanity to our nation and praying for it. There is no doubt that destructive lifestyle patterns are on the increase in our culture and in some cases these sins are being sanctioned by our governments and even our Churches!

As you read through the rest of these “laws”, circle the ones that make sense to you. The Law of God is there as a “taskmaster”. It is a standard by which everything on Earth is measured but it is no longer a tool of condemnation for us in the Devil’s hand. No longer can he say of me that I am guilty of breaking the Law in this or that way. I died to the Law and am hidden in Christ. My master is the Holy Spirit. When I sin, He is faithful to convict me, lead me quickly to repent, to forgive my sin and lead to me in the paths of righteousness. The way out of sinning is to keep in step with the Holy Spirit – something that even a child can do.

Questions:

1. Give a simple strategy for the healing of our nation’s ills.

2. Please elaborate on the thought that your “Master” is the Holy Spirit.

Creation Itself is Getting Sick

February 22 – Today’s Readings – Leviticus 16-18 and Psalms 52

In Chapter 18 of Leviticus we find a most fascinating statement – the land “vomited out the nations”. I get the impression that the sins mentioned in this section of Scripture were so contrary to what God intended in creation that creation itself was made sick by all of it.

What were the sins revealed? – Marrying 2 sisters – Sleeping with your father’s wife – Lying with a man as one lies with a woman – Sleeping with your neighbor’s wife – Offering your children to be burned to death on the altar of Molech – Making sacrifices in the open fields!

These folk were more or less like people in our society! In our nation, we legalize and even promote sexual sin and call it a “new normal” or a “personal choice”. We make divorce as easy as marriage, we promote and pay for abortion, we legalize euthanasia, and think nothing of adultery and rebellion against God’s laws.

Somehow, in the mysterious workings of creation, there is an almost mystical connection between increased sin in the land resulting in the land and the atmosphere suffering and becoming ill.

As a side note, God never said that we were free to abuse this beautiful planet but that we should be good managers of it. (Genesis 9: 2-3) Whenever sin increases in a nation, the Earth itself suffers from the ravages of man’s abuses. We, as Christians need to be part of the crowd that desires good management of Earth’s resources – not part of the crowd that seeks only has contempt and disregard for this Earth God gave us. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not a “greenpeace” guy – nor do I hug trees – I just want sanity to be part of our stewardship of God’s Earth. Let’s increase funding to fight more forest fires and decrease C02 emissions – they are the major problem!

It is clear in this passage that God makes a direct link between the inherited sinfulness of mankind and the judgment of various kinds of sins. The point to be considered here is that there is eternal judgment as well as direct immediate results for certain sinful lifestyle choices. If sins increase in a nation, that nation will not longer be allowed to exist. The ground (creation) itself will reject its people and God will no longer keep quiet about the issues. The eternal result however, will be far worse. We must keep speaking sanity to our nation and praying for it. There is no doubt that destructive lifestyle patterns are on the increase in our culture and in some cases these sins are being sanctioned by our governments and even our Churches!

As you read through the rest of these “laws”, circle the ones that make sense to you. The Law of God is there as a “taskmaster”. It is a standard by which everything on Earth is measured but it is no longer a tool of condemnation for us in the Devil’s hand. No longer can he say of me that I am guilty of breaking the Law in this or that way. I died to the Law and am hidden in Christ. My master is the Holy Spirit. When I sin, He is faithful to convict me, lead me quickly to repent, to forgive my sin and lead to me in the paths of righteousness. The way out of sinning is to keep in step with the Holy Spirit – something that even a child can do.

Questions:

1. Give a simple strategy for the healing of our nation’s ills.

2. Please elaborate on the thought that your “Master” is the Holy Spirit.

Not Impressed

August 22 – Today’s Readings – Ezekiel 7-9 and Psalms 52

Ezekiel 9:3-5 & 9:9-11 reads, “Now the glory of the God of Israel went up from above the cherubim, where it had been, and moved to the threshold of the temple. Then the LORD called to the man clothed in linen who had the writing kit at his side and said to him, ‘Go throughout the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of those who grieve and lament over all the detestable things that are done in it.’ As I listened, he said to the others, ‘Follow him through the city and kill, without showing pity or compassion.” – “He answered me, ‘The sin of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great; the land is full of bloodshed and the city is full of injustice’. They say, ‘The LORD has forsaken the land; the LORD does not see.’ So I will not look on them with pity or spare them, but I will bring down on their own heads what they have done.’ Then the man in linen with the writing kit at his side brought back word, saying, ‘I have done as you commanded.”

Having read these three chapters, would you think it safe to say that God is NOT IMPRESSED when His people refuse to repent? Here and elsewhere He goes into great detail concerning the pain, anger and astonishment He feels when His people turn away from Him and begin to put “other Gods” before Him, turning to sinful ways. In the midst of a people who are bent on rebellion, there is always a remnant that are led by the Spirit and grieved by the sin around them. This is the “mark” of those who are the called-out ones – the children of the Most High. God puts the seal of the Holy Spirit within them and their hearts are captivated by righteousness – deeply grieved by all sin. When the Holy Spirit is present, God’s people are quick to acknowledge sin and continually come back to right relationship with the Father. We grieve without ceasing when we see the rampant sin surrounding us – whether it be in the world or in the lives of those who call themselves “brothers” in Christ.

This is the victory of those who love the Lord – He has given us freedom over sin – the power of the Holy Spirit within us – the ability to “overcome the world”. Revelation 2:17 says” He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give him a white stone with a new name written on it, known only to him who receives it.”

In Christ, we are “more than conquerors” over sin. Through Christ and through repentance we are “clothed in righteousness” – Hallelujah!

Questions:

1. How does the “seal of the Holy Spirit” affect the way you relate to the world around you?
2. Give another example from Scripture where God set apart the righteous before passing judgment on sin.

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