Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Being Half Right With God

2nd Chronicles 25:1-2, “Amaziah was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem.  And his mother's name was Jehoaddan of Jerusalem. And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, but not with a perfect heart.”

This is an intriguing passage of Scripture. King Amaziah was only 25 years old when he became king over Judah (the southern kingdom of Israel). That is a very young age indeed to be made king. The Bible says that Amaziah did that which was RIGHT in the sight of the Lord, but not with a perfect heart. If you read the rest of the chapter, it gets ugly. Amaziah began to worship false gods. The Lord sent a prophet to rebuke the king, but Amaziah didn't listen and threatened the prophet's life. This is in sharp contrast to when king David sinned, and God sent Nathan the prophet. David immediately repented. Amaziah didn't listen. In his wicked arrogance, Amaziah provoked the Lord, which ultimately led to a successful conspiracy by his own people to assassinate him. 

I often am reminded of this passage of Scripture, because it is so applicable today for Christians in 2020. All across the world there are professed Christians who desire to do the right thing in God's sight. They start off on the right path wanting to please God, but then they get sidetracked by sin. Sin easily besets so many Christians from living a happy Christian life, from maturing into the fruitful soulwinner that God intended for each of us to become (Luke 8:15).

There are so mnay wonderful and practical nuggets of truth found in the Bible. I love the following passage concerning king Amaziah. Amaziah decided to go to war against the Edomites. The king then hired the northern armies of Israel to come fight with him. A man of God was sent to warn Amaziah not to take Israel with him, because God is not with them anymore (because of their sins against the Lord). ...

2nd Chronicles 25:6-9, “He hired also an hundred thousand mighty men of valour out of Israel for an hundred talents of silver. But there came a man of God to him, saying, O king, let not the army of Israel go with thee; for the LORD is not with Israel, to wit, with all the children of Ephraim. But if thou wilt go, do it, be strong for the battle: God shall make thee fall before the enemy: for God hath power to help, and to cast down. And Amaziah said to the man of God, But what shall we do for the hundred talents which I have given to the army of Israel? And the man of God answered, The LORD is able to give thee much more than this.”

There are two wonderful truths I see here:

First, Amaziah had only hired the armies of Israel to win a battle against the Edomites. He is now asked by God's man to send Israel back home. Naturally, Amaziah is now worried how he will win this coming battle. So, the man of God assures him that God has the power to help, or to cast down. I love that! Dear reader, one man plus God equals a majority. I take a lot of heated criticism from Neo-evangelicals for my uncompromising stand against Bob Jones University and their shallow graduates (who promote corruptible seed, another gospel of Lordship Salvation, and bid Godspeed to false teachers like Dr. John MacArthur). But I know I am in the right in my battle. Romans 3:4 says my preaching will one day be vindicated. Romans 3:4, “God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.” Lordship Salvation is NOT the simplicity that is in Christ—which is salvation by simple childlike faith in the Good News of Jesus Christ crucified on the cross, buried and risen the third day (1st Corinthians 15:1-4).

Second, king Amaziah had already paid the northern kingdom of Israel 100 talents of silver (which to my understanding in today's value would be about $1,500,000). So, Amaziah is now also wondering how he will recover that lost money. Amaziah is now shorthanded to go fight against the Edomites, and he just gave $1,500,000 to the men he is sending back home. I can understand why the king would have been so frustrated. Yet, it is clear to me that Amaziah was walking by sight, and not by faith. Like the 10 worried spies who came back from Canaan with grim reports, so also did Amaziah have a negative mindset. Only Joshua and Caleb had a mindset of faith toward God, after returning to tell Moses what they had found in the Promised Land. Yet, we see that king Amaziah DID take the advice of the man of God in this situation, and he sent the men of Israel back home.

As promised, God gave Judah the victory over the Edomites. But to my bewilderment, I cannot understand how stupid Amaziah was for what he did next. The king literally took back the pagan idols from Edom, and worshipped them in Judah. This angered the Lord God, understandably. It is difficult for me to imagine how a good king, who won a battle with so few soldiers, would insult God by worshipping false gods to show his gratitude! Is this not like so many Christians today, who commit horrible sins in lieu of God's many and undeserved blessings? If we all got what we justly deserve, the ground would open beneath us immediately and swallow us into the fires of Hell forever! God is so good, and we repay Him so little in our daily walk. God deserves the best, because He is the Best!

Are you half right with God? I've been there. We've all been there. Most of us are still there. We sometimes refer to such believers as “part time Christians” or “Sunday Christians.” On Sunday they play the part of a good Christian, but throughout the rest of the week you cannot tell them apart from the sinful world. We all fail in this area to an extent, because only our blessed Redeemer is sinless. Amaziah did that which was right in the sight of God, at first, but then the ole boy went off the deep end! Please notice that it was right after a great victory in his life, that Amaziah went into idolatry. Suffering, affliction and adversity keep us humble and on our knees before God; but prosperity, blessing and abundance often destroy people's lives, because we always forget the Lord. God fully knows this, which is one reason why He won't answer most of our selfish prayers.

I heard something very interesting and true this past week by Pastor Chuck Baldwin. He said that we often hear Christian people testify in church, how that Satan is attacking them personally, and the Devil is working against their family, and demonic spiritual forces are trying to destroy their marriage and life; yet those very same hypocrites refuse to acknowledge that those same Satanic, evil and demonic forces are relentlessly working to infiltrate, corrupt and destroy our government, Bible colleges, nation and churches! We are all so SELFISH! 

Wake up people! I agree with Pastor Baldwin. I am so sick of our selfish Christianity in America, where everything is filtered through our own selfish personal life. The average Christian (including pastors) couldn't care less about the Devil's New World Order. Consequently, believers continue to vote ungodly reprobates into office. Consequently, believers believers continue to embrace Satan's umpteen corrupt Bible revisions. Consequently, believers Christians continue to support the manmade fraud of present-day Israel. Christians who live only half right with God, become indifferent toward everything. Many professed Christians, like Amaziah, only do what is right when they feel like it. Bob Jones University and their graduates superficially want to do what is right, but they commit evil (like Amaziah) by using, selling and promoting the Devil's Bibles!

“Pathetic comes to mind when considering the condition of so many of our independent Baptist churches across this nation. I don’t know, maybe that seems a little strong. Nope, I am sticking with it. PATHETIC!” —Pastor Bob Gray Sr., “Why Isn't It Working For You?

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