I read the One Year Bible *almost* every day…I will not sin and tell you that I never miss, because I do. I catch it up and rarely miss more than one day at a time. (http://www.oneyearbibleblog.com/) Our Pastor encourages us to do this and I am grateful. A couple of weeks ago, I was reading a passage in the Old Testament that I could not get off my mind and heart. Here it is:
2 Kings 22:3-13
In the eighteenth year of his reign, King Josiah sent Shaphan son of Azaliah and grandson of Meshullam, the court secretary, to the Temple of the Lord. He told him, “Go to Hilkiah the high priest and have him count the money the gatekeepers have collected from the people at the Lord’s Temple. Entrust this money to the men assigned to supervise the Temple’s restoration. Then they can use it to pay workers to repair the Temple of the Lord. They will need to hire carpenters, builders, and masons. Also have them buy the timber and the finished stone needed to repair the Temple. But don’t require the construction supervisors to keep account of the money they receive, for they are honest and trustworthy men.”
Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the court secretary, “I have found the Book of the Law in the Lord’s Temple!” Then Hilkiah gave the scroll to Shaphan, and he read it.
Shaphan went to the king and reported, “Your officials have turned over the money collected at the Temple of the Lord to the workers and supervisors at the Temple.” Shaphan also told the king, “Hilkiah the priest has given me a scroll.” So Shaphan read it to the king.
When the king heard what was written in the Book of the Law, he tore his clothes in despair. Then he gave these orders to Hilkiah the priest, Ahikam son of Shaphan, Acbor son of Micaiah, Shaphan the court secretary, and Asaiah the king’s personal adviser: “Go to the Temple and speak to the Lord for me and for the people and for all Judah. Inquire about the words written in this scroll that has been found. For the Lord’s great anger is burning against us because our ancestors have not obeyed the words in this scroll. We have not been doing everything it says we must do.”
We read that King Josiah (who was only 8 years old when he took the throne! WOW!AND he did what was pleasing to the Lord)sends his court secretary, Shaphan, to the Temple of the Lord. The Temple needed to be restored because it had been neglected. The previous kings were evil and led the people into pagan worship and idolatry for generations. But what kept poking at my heart was THE SCROLL
Shaphan is given the scroll, which was the written record of God’s laws, His Word at the time, by Hilkiah the high priest. How does God’s Word get lost in the Temple? What was the priest doing, who was the only one allowed behind the veil? Then, he reads the Law to the king and he is dismayed! He recognizes the disobedience of his ancestors and the people and immediately sends the priest to speak to the Lord for all the people, including himself.
NOW – How may priests, teachers, megachurch preachers, pastors, motivational speakers, evangelists, “prophets and prophetesses”, apostles, or Christians keep the Word “behind the veil”? How many temples need restoration? In the New Testament, the people were never again asked to build a temple. We don’t read of the construction of huge, ornate, elaborate houses of worship any longer. Why? WE ARE THE TEMPLE. WE ARE THE CHURCH…the body of Christ. How many have disobeyed and KNOW the anger of the Lord is coming? How many pet the flesh of the congregation and don’t feed them the whole Word of God?
The church today needs to renew the covenant with God. Too much prosperity and not enough prayer, repentance, and obedience. We have hidden the scroll behind the veil when it should be written upon hearts. Dishing out a half truth is a whole lie. It’s deceitful and hurts people.
Everyone knows John 3:16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
Ask yourself this question: What is eternal life to ME? What does that mean?
And then, read this verse in the same chapter:
John 3:36 “And anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life. Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment.”
Reading that, what does it mean to obey? It is defined as this:
[oh-bey] –verb (used with object)
1. to comply with or follow the commands, restrictions, wishes, or instructions of
Okay…now, comply is defined as this:
–verb (used without object),
1. to act or be in accordance with wishes, requests, demands, requirements, conditions, etc.; agree
In reading the Gospel, Jesus commands us to do much…to sum it up, we must be willing to give up everything to follow Him (Luke 14:33 So you cannot become my disciple without giving up everything you own.)
We lose our life to gain it. (Matthew 16:25 “If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.”)
We go and make disciples. (Matthew 28:19 ” Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations,baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.)
We pick up our cross daily and follow Him.(Luke 9:23 “Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me.”)
We love our neighbor as ourselves.(Matthew 22:37-29 “Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’)
We tithe, but don’t forget the most important things. (Matthew 23:23 … You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.)
We are to forgive others that we may be forgiven (Matthew 6:14-15 ““If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.”).
Treat others how you would like to be treated (Matthew 7:12 “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets.”)
Be born again (John 3:5 “Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit.”)
Give more than is asked of you (Matthew 5:40-42 “If you are sued in court and your shirt is taken from you, give your coat, too. If a soldier demands that you carry his gear for a mile, carry it two miles. Give to those who ask, and don’t turn away from those who want to borrow.).
These are just a few of the commands that the Lord Jesus gives us. In reading the passage from Kings, combined with the definition of obey and comply, asking myself what is eternal life and what am I seeking, knowing what the Word of God tells me to do, I repent and turn to Him in humility and anguish that I have rejected and refused to obey His Word with my whole heart. I have tears for what I have not done, for souls that burn because I had a responsibility, for the love I did not show when I could have because of my selfishness, for the Word that is in me that I keep behind the veil, for the neighbors that I don’t even look at much less love…God help us all to fulfill our purpose here. We love You and we want to do Your will on earth as it is in heaven. AMEN
Our Governor, Rick Perry , is holding a Solemn Assembly on August 6th at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas. It is a time of repentance and prayer for this nation and its leaders. Hmmm…what a parallel to this passage in 2 Kings. There has been much said about this assembly. Many do not agree and believe that Governor Perry is using his position to catapult a religious agenda. I say, HALLELUJAH! This is not about religion, it’s about the relationship between us, the people, and God. This nation is crying out for restoration. This Temple has been neglected and the scroll is hidden behind the veil. Come, join us. Powerhouse Church will be attending. No agenda, just prayer and repentance for a lost nation. AMEN