Tag Archive for God

When Iniquity Is Full

But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full. (Genesis 15:16)

After calling Abraham from Ur of the Chaldees, God promised to give the land of the Amorites (Canaan) to his descendants. Abraham asked for assurance which God gave by devouring Abraham’s sacrifice in a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp (Genesis 15:8-17).  The Lord explained that the growing nation of Israel would prosper for 400 years, though in cruel bondage in Egypt (Genesis 15:13-15).  God promised to also judge and punish Egypt for her cruelty to Abraham’s seed. (Genesis 15:14; Proverbs 14:31,32).

Everything belongs to God, even animals and land on which men dwell. (Genesis 1:1; Psalm 50:10-12).  The land of God’s promise to Abraham’s descendants was occupied by seven nations who would be destroyed for their hateful iniquity. (Deuteronomy 7:1-10; Acts 13:17-19).  By metonymy the Amorites are put for those seven nations in Genesis 15:16.  The sins of the Amorites had not yet become so great that God would destroy them from off His land.  The Lord’s longsuffering and unwillingness to destroy the righteous with the wicked (Genesis 18:23) allowed these nations to continue to exist for a few more centuries.  In Abraham’s lifetime God would judge other wicked people such as those of the cities of the plain (Genesis 18:16-23; 19:24,25).  Lot’s family was warned to flee Sodom lest they be consumed in the iniquity of the city (Genesis 19:15).  Every nation will answer to God who also grants it power to exist.  There is no power but of God (John 19:11; Romans 13:1).

Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people. The king’s favor is toward a wise ser vant: but his wrath is against him that causeth shame (Proverbs 14:34-35).

The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God (Psalm 9:17).

 Some have questioned how a good God could order the nations of Canaan to be destroyed and the land given to Israel.  The answer is that wickedness had become so entrenched in them, that God’s mercy and longsuffering had been expended.  He executed judgment upon them. Israel was only given the land on this condition.  God is a merciful, longsuffering Savior, but one day He will also be judge, jury, and executioner of unrepentant sinners.

The point at which iniquity so saturates a nation that God judges and destroys it is determined in the longsuffering but just heart of God.  He is the judge of all (Hebrews 12:23), including nations (Psalms 67:4; 82:8).

Once in the days of Noah, God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.  After much striving with man to repent, He destroyed the world with a flood (Genesis 6:5-8; 1 Peter 3:19-21).  After the flood, Noah and his family were given the earth to populate and possess.  He was not unrighteous to give Noah’s faithful family what He had taken from Adam’s unfaithful sons.  The wicked and slothful one-talent-man had his talent taken and given to another (Matthew 25:28).  The fleshly nation of Israel had God’s name taken away and His name given to righteous men of the nations (Isaiah 65:15; Acts 11:26).  Many examples of this just judgment of God are found throughout the Scriptures.

Are you living faithfully before God?  Are you contributing righteousness that calls and (for a time) grants sinners time to repent and turn to God?  Sin matters. Immorality or iniquity in society matter also.  When iniquity is full, God is just in His judgment and we can be assured His mercy has been sufficiently applied.  Are you living to fill up the cup of wrath or helping family, friends and your world drink of the Lord’s mercy?      HJS

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God Created The Heaven And The Earth

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1).

Appropriately God and Moses began Israel’s instructions concerning life and God’s wisdom and right to regulate that life with this verse.  It is truth fundamental to understanding all things and especially to possessing all the blessings God intended for His creatures.

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created (Revelation 4:11).

God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that He is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though He needed any thing, seeing He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; (Acts 17:24-25).

Surely having made man, He knows what is best for man. In that He created all, it is wisdom and pleasure to submit to Him. Consider Psalm 100; Ecclesiastes 12:1,13,14 and Colossians 1:15-18. HJS

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“Nature” Is Wonderful!

This is written on perhaps the coldest day of this winter. But doesn’t it thrill us to think of the many moments we have enjoyed viewing or basking in “nature’s” glorious presence! Spring fever will soon overtake many of us for those mountains, canyons, fields, oceans, lakes, streams, plants of beauty and the beasts. They provide delight, challenge and sustains us.

What we call “nature” declares the One even more wonderful – the Father of us all, the Creator of nature and every good thing we enjoy. The invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead… (Romans 1:20a). The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth his handiwork. (Psalm 19:1).

God also provides a fulfilling challenge to attain ALL of His blessings and our BEST potential in being like His Son. He sustains us and blesses us with every good thing in life. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. (James 1:17). His spiritual blessings do not go dormant with the seasons nor fade in their beauty. No man can contaminate or deface the greatest of God’s blessings. His Son, Jesus and the life we may know in Christ are the greatest of Our Father’s gifts. Jesus says, The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. (John 10:10).

By His word, the Bible and living the Christian life, we attain the blessedness our loving Father is waiting to bestow on us. All spiritual blessing under the sun are in the Son (Ephesians 1:3-6; Galatians 3:26-29). Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 2:9-13: But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him….Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

Maybe it is hard to think on parts of “nature” that seem dead for the the cold of Winter. Like in an hour of sorrow, our desires seem difficult to revive. But our Father knows and can provide every need we have and ones of cheer that will endure the ages. After-all it is He who has given us family, friends and the wonder of “nature”. Great comfort and delight can be known even in the darkest of hours to those who trust God. Another and far more glorious spring is yet to come to life for those who trust and obey Him.

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. (Revelation 21:4). Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality(1Corinthians 15:51-53). For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord (1Thessalonians 4:16-17).

It is enjoyable to listen to a fisherman, hunter or outdoorsman tell about his love of nature and exploits in the wild. They speak about the nice crisp air of a Fall or Winter morning, the sights and the calm of being in the Arkansas woods, rivers and lakes. Outdoors men gain a great knowledge, appreciation and excitement for “nature”. For just a few moments, let’s contemplate another beautiful realm – heaven – God’s real country! Can you imagine the experience? Here is a poem about that from an author unknown.

What Must It Be Like?

What must it be to step on shore, and find it – heaven;

To take hold of a hand, and find it – God’s hand;

To breathe a new air, and find it – celestial air;

To be invigorated, and find it – immortality;

To rise from the care, and loneliness, and turmoil of earth into unbroken calm;

To wake up and find it – Glory.

Someone acquainted with the third heaven wrote, For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen (Ephesians 3:14-21). Amen.    HJS

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