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Be ye not mockers

(Isaiah 28:22)

Now therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord God of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth.

Only God understands life. He is the only one who can instruct us rightly on how to do life successfully.

His word provides the direction and counsel we need.

There is no good thing we know that we have not received from Him. So why should we mock?

Why should we mock others and judge them because of the decisions they’ve made or because of the path they’re on?

The first thing we should do if we believe we’ve recognised the error of their ways is to pray for them. Only God, by His word, and the working of the Holy Spirit can convict people and shine a light to reveal the error of their ways and show them the right path they should be on.

And when we have the opportunity to tell people about their mistakes, we should do so with humility. We might not know what it’s like to walk the path they’re on, and if it had not been for the grace of God, our own experience might not have been that different.

It displeases God when we mock people, or even try to help them from a position of pride.

When God blesses us with the opportunity to help, we should do so with gratefulness to Him, with humility, and from an overflow of the grace that we have received from Him.

When a person becomes heartless, knowledge, and the fear of the Lord

(Hosea 4)

Whoredom and wine and new wine take away the heart. Hosea 4:11

You can’t reason with people who live like this because they are heartless.

If God leads you to them, you must rely wholly on Him to guide and direct you as He helps them through you.

Even preaching the Gospel to them must be done by the direction of God. He alone, by the Holy Spirit, can convict a heartless person and make the person willing and able to receive the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…. (v.6)

How can we live without knowledge? How can we live without God and His word? No one can fully understand the depths and meaning of life; only God can, and we must take Him seriously. We must take everything He says seriously.

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7

It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God

May we never get where God tells us to continue in our sin because we have refused to heed His warning and turn from the error of our ways.

May our sacrifices and worship ever be acceptable to God because they are gifts from a pure heart, offered with reverence to our God — the Sovereign and Almighty God — in spirit and in truth.

That we be not busybodies, minding other people’s businesses

(Hosea 3)

When people follow God and walk according to His calling and mandate for their lives, it is not our place to have opinions about their affairs, and judge them.

Hosea, a prophet of the living God, was told by God to marry a harlot. He did.

There might have been people questioning his calling because of this. He might have been judged or criticised while walking according to the calling of God.

It is not our place to judge. The Lord of the harvest apportions places to us to tend and occupy until He returns.

Let’s be busy with the work He has put in our hands and stop being busybodies, minding other people’s businesses.

When God’s people stray

(Amos 4)

When challenges and inexplicable difficulties come up in the lives of God’s people, it is wise to stop a while, and consider our ways.

Have we strayed from our Father? Is He calling us to return to Him?

Challenges could be an act of grace that’s supposed to help us return to our Father.

When God’s people stray, our ever loving, gracious, and merciful Father might allow roadblocks on our way so we don’t continue on the wrong path without realising it.

And He is ever willing to welcome us back when we return.

The challenges we face might not always be as a result of our straying from God — we live in a fallen world, and we are in a battle, wrestling not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:12–13).

So we must put on the whole armour of God… and stand.

And we must continually consider our ways, and return when we hear our Father calling us to do so.

May we not keep stalling and delaying our return to our Father, so we do not ever hear these words from Him—

…and because I will do this unto thee, prepare to meet thy God. Amos 4:12

When the time comes to meet our God, may it be a time of joy and wonder; a time when He welcomes us home and we hear Him say—

Welcome, thou good and faithful servant….

Valley of bones

(Ezekiel 37)

♣ The Prophet Ezekiel first saw the bones (vs. 1–2)

When we see, or are made aware of challenges that confront us, maybe God is about to help us with the situation.

We should not lose hope, give up or run away in the face of challenges.

♣  Son of man, can these bones live? (v. 3)

When God asks a question, it’s not because He does not already know the answer to the question. It is perhaps, more a matter of faith, causing us to think and consider what God can do.

We should not be in a hurry to answer, so that we do not with our own mouth, stop the work of God for us by speaking words contrary to His purpose. Like the Prophet Ezekiel, our response should be along the lines of “O Lord God, Thou knowest”.

♣ O ye dry bones, hear the word of the Lord (v.4)

It is by the Word that we live. There is power in God’s word to save and give life again. So speak God’s word continually over your life, circumstances, and situations.

Whatever the challenge before you, the question is, “What is God’s word about this?”

Seek God’s word and speak it.  Speak God’s word by faith, knowing without doubt that God is faithful. He would bring His word to pass.

…then ye shall know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD. Ezekiel 37:14

♣  A covenant of peace (vs. 15–28)

The sins of Israel did not stop God from coming to help them.

They had lost hope because of their situation, but God began the process of their salvation and restoration, and brought it to fruition by Himself.

Blessed is the people whose God is the Lord

We should never be afraid to return to God when we stray. Our Father is merciful, gracious, and loving. He would receive us. And He would save us.