For the past few years the Holy Spirit has been emphasizing our identity as sons and daughters of God. While this has been essential to our understand who we are It is also important that we remember we are also priests.
When you think of a priest what is the image that comes to your mind? I normally picture a person wearing a clergy shirt. Every minister that wears a clergy shirt has daily reminder that they have been called to serve in the ministry. I know when I have worn my clergy shirt I am aware everyone knows who I am and what I represent. You can feel all these eyes on you and truth behold you are much more aware your conduct. You are aware of your attitude and actions. There is no hiding of who we are
In 2 Chronicles 29 Hezekiah starts regaining at 25 years old. One of his first under taking was to assemble the priesthood and have them reopen the temple and to remove the “rubbish” out of the temple.
To be honest taking out the rubbish is an ongoing thing in our lives.
Hezekiah makes it clear his expectations He tells the priest not to neglect their duties as priests. I am hoping all of us might feel the weight of being priests and thus living our public and private lives in a manner fit for the priesthood.
“2 Chronicles 29:11 (NLT) My sons, do not neglect your duties any longer! The Lord has chosen you to stand in his presence, to minister to him, and to lead the people in worship and present offerings to him.”
Yes, we are priests:
If our final destination is to be priests who are kings and we will reign on the earth we should be practicing now.
In the words of Hezekiah:
When you and I don’t get the answer we wanted how does it affect our attitude. Perhaps one of my favorite stories in the Bible is when 3 very young men “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego” (believed to be between 14-17 years old) were faced with a life and death decision. Literally, it was a life and death decision.
In the story Nebuchadnezzar, wrote a decree that everyone had to bow and worship a statue of him or be put to death. Imagine you have been taken captive and moved hundreds a miles from your home and then you are faced with the decision to compromise your very core beliefs and live or hold onto your convictions and “die”.
Here’s the story:
I love their response to the threat, “But if not… let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”
So I am considering how do I respond when God doesn’t answer my needs, I mean real needs. I know this worship is more than singing songs. It’s a surrendered life.
This is Jesus’s response to facing the threat of death:
Yes, worshipping God is expressed when “our will” is overruled by His will…
Jesus’s declaration (ours)?
What if God chooses not to answer?
Have you ever felt like God didn’t know/see what you are going through? You can feel lonely, discouraged, hopeless, depressed, overwhelmed, lost in a wilderness and a host of other feelings and emotions.
Here is an unchangeable truth - our God is not blind. He sees everything…
There is a story in Genesis 16 where Abraham and Sarah decide since she can’t have children that they would have children through Sarah’s handmaiden Hagar.
What a disaster trying to fulfill a prophetic word through human reasoning. Hagar runs away and finds herself in the alone in the wilderness. Sound familiar? When we feel like Hagar we can withdraw and go to a wilderness place.
I just love those 2 questions. Where have you come from, and where are you going?” She answers “She said, “I am fleeing from the presence of my mistress Sarai.” But God has a spring in the wilderness that we can drink from.
Yes, your Father sees everything and he has a word for all of us in times of great pain and despair. When we read the word to Hagar I wonder if we would like what God speaks to Hagar.
Though this was a great promise she still had to return and be subject to Sarah and her harsh feelings toward her. Often the promises of God are birthed in turmoil.
So Hagar says this:
Our Father “lives and see us”. He is the God who seesand he has a well of living water for all of us to drink from in every circumstance.
In Deuteronomy 12 we find Moses giving instructions of how Israel should live in the promise land. Some of you will say, “oh this is the law”. There are always spiritual principles that we can glean even from the books of the law.
The verse I want us to consider is:
Deuteronomy 12:8 “You shall not at all do as we are doing here today—every man doing whatever is right in his own eyes”
Israel was bringing there old behavior patterns and their personal likes, dislikes and yes their theology into the promise land. Everyone had an opinion of what they thought was right and what was wrong.
Here we are 2020 and the world and even including a vast number of churches and sadly vast amounts of Christians who have now decided what is right and wrong in their opinion. From my perspective (for whatever that is worth) countless people are now walking in “doing whatever is right in his own eyes”. For many they have rewritten the Bible, they select certain verses to prove their point but purposely disregard other verses by what I call, “I think theology.” While others no longer use the bible as a source of right and wrong or even as a moral compass.
With this theology where do we stop? Is it now ok that a parent sexually abuses their children saying its not abuse but love. About a year ago I was being interviewed to be a juror on a case. A father had been sleeping with his daughter for years and by his account by mutual consent because they loved each other. They were saying, “we didn’t hurt anyone, we were simply expressing our love for each other.” You might be saying, that is an extreme example. There are many more examples like this. Like how some states are allowing an abortion of a child (if they call it that) just before and just after birth on the premise of their opinion and choice.
If we continue to adopt the “I think theology” and the “I think moral code” where will this bring us as a culture? Are there no longer biblical values, no longer moral ethics? Have we replaced these things by I think? No longer rights and wrongs but I think?
I could quote a bunch of verses but just looking at this question “are we there” through the simple eyes of logic it is frightening to see where we will go as a culture.
ARE WE THERE?
Pastor Brian R. Weeks began ministering in 1972 and has served as a pastor to both youth and young adults. He also served as an associate pastor for eleven years, and then for 25 years as a senior pastor, apostolic missionary, and church planter. In March of 2017 he released his church Solomon’s Porch, but in order to remain part of the local church, continues to serve among its several pastors.