Devotional 11/24

Wherefore the LORD God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed. 1 Samuel 2:30

Religion is a guy in church thinking about fishing. Relationship is a guy out fishing thinking about God.

There are two types of believers, one who has grown into a relationship with God and one who hasn’t. There is a relationship each of us has with God, we either have intimacy or lack thereof. David was attentive to the spirit of God. When he failed God, he begged, Lord do not take your spirit from me … but Sampson did not even notice when God left him.

It’s true Sampson contained the power of God, but it is all He was… a container, an instrument. God fulfilled His purpose in Sampson because He is faithful, and God’s mercy manifested after Sampson prayed his last prayer. The sovereignty of God stepped in, and worked all things for good: but this was not God’s plan for Sampson.

The Lord has a plan for each of us, a plan that is good, perfect and pleasing. God’s plans are to prosper us, not to harm us. When we truly honor God, we watch our steps and even after making mistakes: we suffer failing God. Someone who does not have a relationship with God, does not suffer offending or disobeying God.

Sampson reminds me of Saul: they both disobeyed God and arrogance blinded them, which made them the laughingstock of their enemies. The Lord cut Sampson’s life short, the way He did with Saul because they shared a love for the enemy. Saul had mercy on Amalek, and therefore could not (it was impossible) to stand for God while also saving His people’s enemy. In the same way Sampson loved Philistine women, therefore he would always have an undecided heart towards the punishment of His own people’s enemies. How can God use us mightily if we love that which He hates?!

In Romans 4:5, the Bible says you cannot make God accept you because of something you do because God makes us righteous when we have faith in Him. Sampson did not have faith in God, but David did. Faith looks like something: faith without works is dead! Although we are accepted by God, the Lord will only be pleased by our faith in Him. And faith looks like love through obedience: to love God is equivalent to obeying His commands.

Let’s pray:

Lord! Thank you! May we war in the Spirit for all that stands against us having the same mind which you have God. May we hate the things which you hate! And may your enemies be our enemies, and may we not be divided in our hearts and minds in Jesus name, Amen!

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