MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

Sardis or Laodecia?

November 24th, 2016 Viewed 273 times

Prayer-is-the-language-by-Leland-Francisco.jpgIn my recent Bible reading I found myself in Revelation 3 considering the churches that are presented there.  I believe that I’ve only ever heard of this present age being Laodecia for a couple of reasons.

First, many in the circles I travel are pre-tribulation , pre-millenialists , and these people hold to the idea that the ordering of the churches in the book of Revelation has significance to the time periods before Christ’s return.  Therefore, to be in Laodecia– the last of the churches mentioned– means that the Lord’s return is not just imminent but soon.

Be Quick To Resolve Offenses and To Seek Forgiveness

November 23rd, 2016 Viewed 254 times, 4 so far today

Man-Woman-Fight.jpgThe Bible is a practical book, teaching us not just who God is but how He wants us to live.  Within the pages of Scripture we see both principle and example of many different life choices.  The one I want to focus on today is the idea that we are not to let things go on long when there is an issue with other people.

In Ephesians 4:26 we read:

Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,

This is a very wise principle, for over time things tend to harden in our minds and the more time passes the harder it is to restore what once was there.  Indeed, while sometimes time will heal some old wounds, it won’t do it until forgiveness and repair have been had– and sometimes what happens is that time has healed the wound, but the relationship has already been destroyed and is now beyond repair.

Jehoshaphat – His Legacy

October 19th, 2016 Viewed 262 times

We started this series looking at Jehoshaphat’s father, Asa, and the legacy that he left his son.  We saw how Asa had begun the work of removing the high places, and set the groundwork for following after God that his son improved upon.  What should have followed was a story about how great the child of Jehoshaphat was.  Instead, we find out that his legacy was not as good as one could have hoped for.

Jehoshaphat’s Legacy (2 Chronicles 21)

Asa was a good king that left Jehoshaphat a kingdom pleasing to God, and Jehoshaphat continued this legacy.  The kingdom was expanding, and had people from other countries bringing tribute.  The children of Judah were hearing about God, and were being judged righteously. Male prostitutes, high places and idol worship was being removed from the area and things seemed to be going well. Yet because of Jehoshaphat’s alliances, his son did not follow in his way.

Jehoshaphat – Faulty Alliances

October 18th, 2016 Viewed 277 times
Asa - Jehoshaphat - Joram ( )

Asa – Jehoshaphat – Joram ( ) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you asked me to sum up the key problem that Jehoshaphat had based on the Biblical record, I would have to say is that he entangled himself in faulty or poor alliances.  I believe that this is why the Bible pays a lot of attention in the New Testament about making sure that false teaching is called out and that we separate from it.

Jehoshaphat and Ahab (1 Kings 22, 2 Chronicles 18)

Marriages at the time of the Israelite kings, at the highest level, were often done for the purposes of allying two families or kingdoms.  We see this played out in many accounts all the way up through the Middle ages.  Many of the kings of Judah and Israel seemed to have wanted to join the two territories back together much like the current American Presidents all try for peace in the Middle East.  Both seem to fail regularly, because it’s not the time.

Jehoshaphat – Reliance on God

October 17th, 2016 Viewed 278 times, 3 so far today
Map of the Levant circa 830 BCE

Map of the Levant circa 830 BCE (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When I was a teen I was very involved in my church’s drama/musical programs.  One of my favorites was “Fat, Fat Jehoshaphat” in which I played King Jehoshaphat.  During this play, the focus was on the passage that we are looking at today, and what part Jehoshaphat’s reliance on God had in his dealings with his enemies.

Jehoshaphat Attacked (2 Chronicles 19:1-2, 20)

After his alliance with Ahab, Jehoshaphat is challenged by a prophet of God. God asks him why he is a friend with the enemies of God. The wrath of God will be upon him, yet not to his destruction because he does seek the Lord.  We see this come to play out when the Ammonites, Moabites and Meunites come to attack.  Jehoshaphat gets advanced notice, and instead of calling up an army, like every other time, Jehoshaphat goes to God.

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.