Saturday, November 12, 2011

LLM Question of the Day, and, LISTENING TO GOD

First the Question: The Apostle Paul never referred to the LORD Jesus either as the Son of Man, or as Jesus of Nazareth, in writing or speaking to Gentiles. True or False?

Please take a moment to respond at the LLM Question of the Day

And now....

Today let us consider, Listening to God

The phrase “the voice of God” or “the voice of the LORD” is used over 50 times in the Bible. The command to “hear the word of the LORD” is found another 24 times. Listening to God is IMPORTANT. Read Isaiah 6:1-10. Uzziah was 16 years old, according to 2 Chronicles 26:1, when he became king of Judah and he reigned for 52 years in Jerusalem (790-739 BC). In 2 Chronicles 26:4 we learn that “he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD.” Verse 5 of that chapter says: “he sought God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding in the visions of God; and as long as he sought the LORD, God made him prosper.”

However, a tragedy occurred in his life at the age of 58, some 10 years before he eventually died. 2 Chronicles 26:16 tells us what happened, "But when he was strong, his heart was lifted up to his destruction, for he transgressed against the LORD, his God, and went into the temple of the LORD to burn incense upon the altar of incense.” Only priests were allowed to do this, and they tried to stop Uzziah from doing it. In the midst of his anger toward the priests, God struck him with leprosy, and he was a leper until the day of his death and had to dwell in a separate house. His son, Jotham, reigned in his place, judging the people of the land in behalf of his leprous father, the king of Judah. Jotham was 25 years old at the time. He “did that which was right in the sight of the LORD” and he “became mighty, because he prepared his ways before the LORD, his God.” Jotham died at the age of 41, and his 20 year-old son, Ahaz, began to reign. 2 Chronicles 28:1 reminds us that Ahaz “did NOT that which was right in the sight of the LORD, like David his father.”

As a result of Ahaz’s idolatry and sin, God delivered him into the hands of the king of Syria as well as the king of Israel, the 10 northern tribes. Pekah, the king of Israel, took 200,000 people captive to Samaria, after killing 120,000 men of Judah. God also allowed the Edomites and the Philistines to invade Judah and destroy villages, and carry away captives. 2 Chronicles 28:19 says: “the LORD brought Judah low because of Ahaz, king of Israel; for he made Judah naked, and transgressed sore against the LORD.”

Uzziah died in 739 BC just about six years before his son, Jotham, also died, and his grandson, Ahaz, became king. In 732 BC Tiglath-Pileser III of Assyria invaded northern Israel and took captives; ten years later, the Assyrians took the entire northern kingdom of Israel into captivity under the leadership of Sennacherib, king of Assyria, who also came against Judah’s king Hezekiah, who was the son of Ahaz.

Ahaz appealed to Assyria for help when he was being attacked by the northern kingdom of Israel under king Pekah, and by the Syrians under Rezin, and by the Edomites and Philistines. The Lord wants Isaiah the prophet to tell Ahaz not to be afraid of Syria and Israel for in 65 years (according to Isaiah 7:1-9) the northern kingdom will be completely broken and no longer be an identifiable people. This happened exactly as predicted under the resettlement project of Ashurbanipal of Assyria.

When king Uzziah died, his son Jotham would reign for only six more years, and his grandson, Ahaz, was only 14 years old at his death. Isaiah was just beginning his ministry.

LISTENING TO GOD

1) REFLECT ON THE TRAGEDY OF SIN!...“In the year that king Uzziah died…” look at 2 Chronicles 26:16-21, as well.

2) RECOGNIZE THE SOVEREIGNTY AND GREATNESS OF THE LORD!...“I saw the LORD”, Isaiah 6:1-4 (Hebrew – Adonai). He saw the LORD’s POSITION, “sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up”, He is LORD of all! Look at Psalm 22:28; Psalm 103:19; Isaiah 52:13; Isaiah 57:15; Revelation 4. He saw the LORD’s PREEMINENCE, “His train filled the temple”, “the whole earth is full of His glory”, “the house was filled with smoke”. Now look at Exodus 40:34-35; 1 Kings 8:10-11; Revelation 15:8. (NOTE: Hebrew word “male” appears three times, emphasizing “fullness”). He saw the LORD’s PURITY...“Holy, Holy, Holy”, look at Psalm 99:2-9; Revelation 4:6-11, the only mention of the “seraphs” or “seraphim”. The word literally means “burning ones”...to “cover” the feet, pictures humility. He saw the LORD’s POWER, “the LORD of hosts”, look at Isaiah 44:6-8, and Isaiah 44:24; then Isaiah 45:6-21; Isaiah 47:4; and Isaiah 48:17. (NOTE: The Targum on Isaiah 6:1 says that Isaiah saw the “glory” of the LORD! See John 12:41)

3) REALIZE YOUR OWN SINFULNESS AND NEED OF THE LORD!...Isaiah 6:5, “Woe is me! For I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips”

4) RECEIVE GOD’S CLEANSING AND FORGIVENESS! Isaiah 6:6-7, also Matthew 8:1-3

5) RESPOND TO GOD’S CALL! Isaiah 6:8-10, and then Daniel 10:10-19. The REQUEST comes from the triune God, “who will go for US?" Compare to Genesis 1:26; and Genesis 11:7; “the voice of the Lord”, (Hebrew – Adonai). The RECOGNITION of the prophet is crucial, “Here am I; send me”, “Behold, me…”. God wants to use us more than we want to be used! He also uses clean vessels! The RESPONSIBILITY is to God...“Go, and tell this people”. The RESULTS are known and controlled by God Himself. Our job is to be Faithful!

“Believe on the LORD Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved” Acts 16:31, while there is still time!

So There You Have it!

Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide. The time is short

Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.

In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry

Pastor David Picos, D.D.
Minister and Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)

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