Monday, April 22, 2013
2 Kings 15-17
What catches me is this week's reading is an accumulation of what we have been reading the last several weeks--Israel's sin again God.
Time and time again, Israel didn't turn away from ALL their sin. Whether it was worshiping at high places, participating in rituals of other nations that God had driven out before them, or secretly doing things against God, they kept on sinning. They continued to do just as they did before God saved them and continued to do things that God continued to tell them to stop doing. I see over and over again in these chapters how the people didn't fully turn back to God. The people may have thought "but I've stopped doing the really bad things against God, I'm sure these small things aren't a big deal." We see that God wanted all of them, not just parts of them; He wanted their hearts along with their actions. Because they did not give Him all of themselves, or turn from their wickedness, the scripture tells us God was very angry with them and removed them from his presence (17:18)...they were then taken into exile. Even when they were in exile, they tried to do what God had commanded, but still, they worshiped other Gods as well.
That's the same today. God wants all of us...not just some of us. He wants us to tear down all our high places, not just some of them, or the "really" bad ones. And this could look different for all of us. Our high places all look different from one another, but God still wants all of them destroyed in our lives so He can have all of us, not just parts. We see that when God gave them His commandments, it was to keep the people safe, not just to be a stickler for the rules.
Ask the Lord what high places you may be preserving in your life. Ask Him to help you tear them down. He wants all of you, and loves ALL of you enough to give you the strength, encouragement and the gusto to tear them all down. He wants all of you.