Saturday, April 7, 2012

In an evil vacuum





Scripture

Now the sons of Eli were worthless men; they did not know the LORD
(1 Samuel 2:12 NASB)
and the custom of the priests with the people. When any man was offering a sacrifice, the priest’s servant would come while the meat was boiling, with a three-pronged fork in his hand.
(1 Samuel 2:13 NASB)
Then he would thrust it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fork brought up the priest would take for himself. Thus they did in Shiloh to all the Israelites who came there.
(1 Samuel 2:14 NASB)
Thus the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD, for the men despised the offering of the LORD.
(1 Samuel 2:17 NASB)
Now Eli was very old; and he heard all that his sons were doing to all Israel, and how they lay with the women who served at the doorway of the tent of meeting.
(1 Samuel 2:22 NASB)
He said to them, “Why do you do such things, the evil things that I hear from all these people?
(1 Samuel 2:23 NASB)
“No, my sons; for the report is not good which I hear the LORDS people circulating.
(1 Samuel 2:24 NASB)
“If one man sins against another, God will mediate for him; but if a man sins against the LORD, who can intercede for him?” But they would not listen to the voice of their father, for the LORD desired to put them to death.
(1 Samuel 2:25 NASB)

 

Observation


The story of Eli's sons is one of the saddest which can be found in the Bible. These men were the priests who were supposed to be leading the people to God. Instead, they were incredibly selfish. They did not seek the face of God, and nor did they desire for the people to know God. Rather, they only saw their "service" as a way in which to get what they wanted. Namely, they stole the food which was brought to sacrifice to God and they coerced the women serving in the temple to sleep with them. Wow! Is there anything much more repulsive which they could have done?

 

Application


Today is that day between Good Friday and Easter. In many ways its a day of darkness, quiet, and gloom. It's a day when the followers of Christ didn't know what to do. It was a Sabbath day and so they would have gone through the motions, but yet, there was a vacuum there that day. What was going to happen? This day becomes a pivotal day in the life of Christ's followers. What will they do in the vacuum?

In the former Soviet Union an official spiritual vacuum was created by an atheistic government. They were lovers of the theory of evolution, for this meant that humanity left to its own vices would simply evolve to become better and better. However, that was without an understanding of original sin, or a bent toward sinning which we all inherit. Left in a vacuum -- the bent toward sinning takes over. Humanity doesn't just automatically get better and better without a personal relationship with God. The sons of Eli did not have a personal relationship with God and the evil and corruption which they perpetrated in the name of God was horrific. They met their doom! In the former Soviet Union human rights abuses ran rampant. Why not -- every person was out to save their own necks, at the expense of everyone else.

The vacuum for the disciples lasted only until Sunday morning. There wasn't time for them to digress a great deal. However, in their despair I wonder what really went on that day, and I wonder if sometimes we get hung up on that day. Do we sometimes dwell on the Saturday before Sunday and live in a spiritual vacuum? Do we wonder whether what he's done means anything for us? Do we wonder what in the world lies ahead and do I have to figure it all out for myself? Don't stay there -- it is an evil vacuum and it will suck you down a path that is very unhealthy. Instead, we must keep our eyes on him and keep moving forward in our relationship with him. Ask him to help pull us out of the doom and gloom in which we may find ourselves for this may be Saturday -- but the resurrection day is coming! We know -- we've read the rest of the story.

 

Prayer


Lord, please help me to live in the hope of resurrection day, every single day of my life! Amen.

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