Friday, November 6, 2015

Like All the Nations

All scripture references, unless otherwise noted, are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible.
There is an interesting account in 1st Samuel 8:4-6 where, "...all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah, And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations. But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the LORD." God's answer to Samuel is found is 1st Samuel 8:7 where, "the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them." Somehow I don't think God was pleased with the people's choice. God went on to have Samuel tell what manner of king would be over them. In 1st Samuel 8:19-20, the Bible says, "Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us; That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles."

If God wasn't pleased with Israel because they wanted a king, "like all the nations," I wonder if He is pleased with the church? I remember early in my Christian walk, not liking some of the more modern or contemporary music that was becoming popular with Christians. Many of the singing groups had scowls on their faces.Some, to me anyway, just looked plain ungodly! I know the expression, "don't judge a book by its cover," but it was hard to look at the advertisements without turning away in disgust. 

I am again reminded of the story of Esau and Jacob found in Genesis 25:26-34. Esau traded his birthright for some bread and a bowl of lentil soup. The Bible says, "thus Esau despised his birthright." We don't hear a lot about Esau but he is mentioned in the New Testament. In Rom 9:13 the Bible says, "As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated." It is truly a terrible thing to be hated by God. Now lest any should accuse me of not loving the sinner, let me quote one of the best known passages in the Bible. The Lord Jesus said in John 3:16, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." If God so loved me, a rank sinner, should I not then love my neighbor as myself? This is after all called the royal law in James 2:8.

Getting back to my subject we know that, "...all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall." (See 1st Corinthians 10:11-12) If most of the contemporary Christian music is sung truly to glorify and exalt the Lord Jesus, well. However if what we have done is traded our spiritual birthright for the paltry praise of men then God help us to repent and to give the Lord Jesus all the glory. It is not my intent to criticize anyone for their way of worship. I have always, from the first day I surrendered my life to the Lord Jesus until now, desired to serve and worship the Lord Jesus.

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