“They did not lay bare your guilt, to avert your fate.” —Lamentations 2:14
Solomon built a temple in Jerusalem as a dwelling place for the Lord. “The Lord’s glory filled the house of God” (2 Chr 5:14). During the next three-hundred years, Jerusalem was miraculously spared from attack on several occasions (e.g. 2 Kgs 19:35).
Gradually the people grew complacent and neglected the Lord’s commands, falling into lifestyles of sin and injustice. Many so-called prophets of the time fueled this lax attitude with “false and specious visions” and “misleading portents” (Lam 2:14). They falsely predicted divine protection rather than judgment and accountability for sin. In 587 B.C., the unthinkable occurred. Babylon besieged Jerusalem, destroyed the Temple, and the Lord did not intervene (2 Chr 36:19). The inhabitants of Jerusalem were killed or exiled. The temple was gone, and so, seemingly, was the Lord. All was unexpectedly lost (see Prv 29:1).
We want to hear about hope and security, but we also need to hear about our guilt (Lam 2:14). We must never grow weary of hearing about our propensity to sin and to backslide. “The things that happened to” the people of Jerusalem “serve as an example...as a warning to us” (1 Cor 10:11). Therefore, “let anyone who thinks he is standing upright watch out lest he fall!” (1 Cor 10:12) The sins of complacency and presumption lead straight to the shock of hell. Repent! Live in the fear of the Lord (Prv 9:10).
Prayer: Jesus, may You find faith in me (Mt 8:10), not smugness.
Promise: “To the centurion Jesus said, ‘Go home. It shall be done because you trusted.’ ” —Mt 8:13
Praise: Tim overcame temptations to acts of sexual impurity by praying daily devotions to Mary’s Immaculate Heart.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
(The 40 days of Discipleship Retreats are full of foundational teachings to help you be a true disciple of Christ. See www.presentationministries.com for details. Come for three or 40 days.)
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