By Pastor Jerry Donovan
Biblical history of Israel has many lessons we can learn from. God blessed this nation not because they were special but because of His grace. He chose them to be His own witnesses to all the nations, for through them the promised Messiah of Israel, the King of the Jews, and Savior of the world was to be born.
However, over centuries they began living in a downward, cyclical spiral where they would rebel against God; receive His punishment; repent of their sins; be restored by God’s grace only to rebel again and again against their God and King. God in His grace restored them by raising up a leader to judge and govern them every time they repented of their sin, but they envied other nations who were ruled by despotic kings. They were not content to have God as their own, eternal King and wait for His promised Messiah, and so God gave them over to their lustful desires.
“They have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not be King over them,” were the sad words that Samuel was to hear in 1 Samuel 8:7. The warning that was given to Israel at the start of their wilderness journey continued to be ignored until Israel was scattered throughout the world.
Israel did not listen to God’s warning, and they fell into a gross heresy, living in a downward, cyclical spiral of rebellion against their God and King. Not unlike the Church of today who were given warnings in her early days through the apostles and prophets about the last days where there would be an abundance of false teachers; false christs; doctrines of demons and false prophets. They warned us of an outbreak of cults, undisciplined confusion and gross ungodliness. They foretold that many would fall away and most would not tolerate sound doctrine, resulting in a turning away from the truth, and preferring a watered-down prosperity gospel, only listening and hearing the false prophets’ voices.
Our attention has been diverted away from the Person of Jesus Christ by the immoral men and women that we were warned of. The warning was and is not to pay attention to worldly fables, foolish myths and endless genealogies, which increases speculation rather than promoting the doctrine of God and the glorious gospel of Christ. Many will hold to a form of godliness turning away from the truth and believing the satanic lie.
It now depends on us not to follow in the steps of Israel, who turned away from their God and Savior. We must believe and demonstrate to the world the Word of Truth. Let us set the eyes of our heart on Jesus as we run the race that is set before us. Let us fight the good fight of faith and hold fast to that which is good, so that we may finish the course that is set before us and stand firm on the faith which was once given to the saints.
Let us learn from the nation of Israel, who did not heed God’s instructions and fell into gross heresy. Let us put on the full armor of God, so that we may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, the powers of the forces of darkness, and against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.