Wow, what a week! I have been so blessed to serve God this week. I had a great meeting with someone about the PA Preaching In The Mountains Family Camp this week. I got to spend time with a great Evangelist this week that is in a revival near me for a couple of days. To top it all off, I sat in a hospital for a very long time waiting on the Lord's timing so a dear sister in Christ could deliver her first child. That wait was very long and tedious but well worth it. Wow, to stand there (outside the room) and listen to that baby boy take his first breath and let out a cry! GOD IS GOOD! While I was waiting in that hospital I had the opportunity to get plenty of study time in and was thinking about the above verses.
This adjective jealous occurs in the Old Testament six times. It refers directly to the attributes of God's justice and holiness, as He is the sole object of human worship, according to Mr. Vine. It means an ardent zeal, jealous. This shows, in a most expressive manner, what love God has for His people. He is jealous for our fidelity because He desires us to have an incomparable happiness that can only be obtained if we have a relationship with Him through His son. God feels for us like we do when we first fall in love in High School. You remember that feeling, don't you? You can't do anything but think about that person. You call them and when you're done you spend thirty minutes saying, "You hang up first." That feeling is how God loves us! I thought, what are some things that makes a person in that kind of relationship mad? Here are some things I came up with...
We do not like to be "cheated" on! God does not like to be cheated on, or two timed, either! We do things that show others we are "taken" or we are "set apart" from those that are single and not in a relationship. In High School, we often give someone a class ring, a necklace, or a letterman jacket. As we grow older we give engagement rings. Finally, we give a wedding ring. I always say there are four rings in a relationship. First is the class ring, then the engagement ring, then the wedding, and the final ring is suffering! Haha, my wife doesn't like that joke! These rings are sign that we are taken. Unfortunately, sometimes people will wear several other people's rings!
There are signs that we are in a relationship with God too. Obedience is a sign of a relationship with God. We are to obey God's Word as it sanctifies us, or sets us apart, from the world. Jn 17:17 Baptism is another sign we are in a relationship with God. I know this kind of falls under the obedience category, but I read somewhere that a Muslim is not considered an infidel when they read a tract or even the Bible for that matter. They are not considered an infidel until they are immersed into Christ. The problem is the church is sneaking out at night with the world. The church is two timing in their relationship with God! Jas 4:4 We aren't sanctified by the Word because we do not obey it. We treat the Word of God like a buffet. We want to pick and choose which parts we want to submit to and disregard the rest. That is cheating on God with the world! Sure we will wear the ring of baptism but forget that ring of obedience. We say, "Well, I'm not that bad. Tommy is bad. That guy is a hypocrite!" Remember, we are to imitate God. Eph 5:1 We should compare our lives to Jesus and not Tommy!
In a relationship we don't like to be stood up. I remember one time I had a friend that was all excited that he finally got this girl to go on a date with him. He was all pumped up. He left to go meet her and she didn't show up. He called her and never got an answer. She decided to go out with her friends instead of him! He went from pumped up to stood up and then to let down! She later told him she thought she would have more fun with her friends and could always reschedule with him. How many times have we stood up God for our friends? We say, "I never miss, this one time will be OK. I can reschedule with God for next week!" We fall victim for the things of this world. 1Jn 2:16 We lust after the things of this world and stand God up when He wants us to meet with Him around His table and commune with Him. We often find out the grass is greener on the other side of the fence because it is filled with manure! We often stand up God because we was sneaking out with the world the night before. We often stand up God on the Lord's Day because we are too busy sneaking out with the world!
Apostasy is possible. God desires us to fellowship with Him through his son. 1Jn 1:3 Many people, unfortunately, have moved away from God. It will be worse for those who do not repent of apostasy than those who never submitted to God. 2Pe 2:20-21 Far too often when a person dumps another person they may realize it was a mistake but never returns to that person out of fear of rejection. People who move away from God feel the same. They feel they never can return to God or He will not forgive them, but that is nonsense! Look at what Simon was told by Peter in Acts 8:18-23 We must repent if we moved away from God. We must confess to Him in prayer and He is faithful to forgive. 1Jn 1:9 God is still driving and has His arm across the back of the seat. The question is, will get in, let Him drive, and slide over next to Him?
Today, understand that God is a jealous God. Not because He is insecure, but because he has a love for us that is expressed with an ardent zeal for us to have a relationship with Him. We must be obedient in that relationship and make sure we don't cheat on Him with the world. We must not stand Him up and meet with Him around His table. We sneak out with the world and eventually dump Him and get out of His truck. When we realize that we made a mistake dumping God and want back in His truck to snuggle next to Him all we need to is repent and confess to Him in prayer. I am honored to serve a God that is jealous and desires nothing but the best for me. I am proud to in a relationship with Him. I hope you are too!
WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED?
We must hear the Word of God: Rom 10:17; Acts 4:4
We must believe or have faith: Heb 11:6; Acts 16:31
We must repent of our sins: Lk 13:3; Acts 17:30
We must confess Christ before others: Mt 10:32; Acts 8:37
We must be immersed into Christ (baptized) Mk 16:16; Acts 2:38
We must be faithful: Rev 2:10; Acts 14:22