Therefore they sent the ark of God to Ekron. So it was, as the ark of God came to Ekron, that the Ekronites cried out, saying, “They have brought the ark of the God of Israel to us, to kill us and our people!” So they sent and gathered together all the lords of the Philistines, and said, “Send away the ark of the God of Israel, and let it go back to its own place, so that it does not kill us and our people.” For there was a deadly destruction throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there. And the men who did not die were stricken with the tumors, and the cry of the city went up to heaven. (vs10-12)
The Lord Jesus STILL has power, even though we are sinners, and He will help us by faith in His name. He has lost no power to save, forgive, and put away sin, but our unbelief hinders Him, but if we believe, then it will be well with us, as He has said. We read, “Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them. And He marveled because of their unbelief. Then He went about the villages in a circuit, teaching (Mark 6:5-6).”
He can be counted upon. The same God that strengthened Paul and gave grace to Charles Spurgeon WILL do the same for us! His blood is still omnipotent, and the Spirit will still save whom He wills, working through faith! Therefore, believe that the Son of God died for your acceptance, and believe that His death earned your cleansing as well. Do not work, only believe, and then work by faith. Through believing, the gospel’s power is your own.
Hophni and Phineas were killed, not because God’s ark is useless, but for unbelief. The SAME greatness from times past will be the same greatness now, because He’s the same, still able to forgive and cleanse no matter the generation or the struggle. Hebrews 13:5-6, says, “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we may boldly say: ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” Godliness is more than we can bear, but we can STILL do all things through Christ, even as Paul who learned how to abound and abase (Phil 4:11-13). We can praise Him in good times and bad, live devoted to the gospel, and we can preach Christ to others, laying our own lives down, just as the saints in the New Testament. The power WAS NOT in them; it was in God who raises the dead, God who exalted Jesus Christ, and in God who works by His Son’s name. Peter says, “Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified His Servant Jesus, whom you delivered up and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let Him go. But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, and killed the Prince of life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses. And His name, through faith in His name, has made this man strong, whom you see and know. Yes, the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all (Acts 3:12-16).” Do not despair: everything that you need to be godly is given to you, freely. Only believe.
Finally, grace is our hope because Jesus is the faithful Priest who obeyed God, so that we could be blessed. God said, “Then I will raise up for Myself a faithful priest who shall do according to what is in My heart and in My mind. I will build him a sure house, and he shall walk before My anointed forever. And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left in your house will come and bow down to him for a piece of silver and a morsel of bread, and say, ‘Please, put me in one of the priestly positions, that I may eat a piece of bread (1 Sam 2:35-36).’” The heavy lifting has been accomplished, when He died for our sins, and now the work of following Christ will also be accomplished because He gives the Spirit. Romans 8:2-4, says, “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh [our sin], God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin [to pay for it]: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law [love] might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” The Christian life isn’t easy, but we have more in God than sin and Satan can throw at us, more hope than calamities can take away, and we have strength to conquer because He loves us.
Multitudes will perish and die in their sin, and many who’ve tried the Christian life will fail at following Jesus, but the answer is still the same - Everything you need is free, and God will make you able because Christ obeyed God. Peter says again, “Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (2 Pet 1:2-4).”
Believing is taking God’s promise as your own, and then walking in it, using it in the battle, and believing Him when everything else seems wrong and contradictory; it is saying, “I have strength”, when you have none; “I have righteousness”, when you’re most wicked; and, “I will do God’s will”, when you’re most tempted; it is believing God and not self, feelings, or circumstance, and it is taking God’s word above your own.
Do you fear that perseverance is harder than you can handle? God is able: trust Him to do it.
Heshimu Colar, Pastor of The Gospel Church, faithfully proclaims the saving message of Jesus Christ, continually exalting Him in God's word as the Savior of...
Now his daughter-in-law, Phinehas’s wife, was with child, due to be delivered; and when she heard the news that the ark of God was captured, and that her father-in-law and her husband were dead, she bowed herself and gave birth, for her...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“Then the Spirit took me up and brought me in a vision by the Spirit of God into Chaldea, to those in captivity. And the vision that I had seen went up from me. So I spoke to those in captivity of all the things the Lord had shown me...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
And I looked, and there in the firmament that was above the head of the cherubim, there appeared something like a sapphire stone, having the appearance of the likeness of a throne. Then He spoke to the man clothed with linen, and said, “Go...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“Now the glory of the God of Israel had gone up from the cherub, where it had been, to the threshold of the temple. And He called to the man clothed with linen, who had the writer’s inkhorn at his side; and the Lord said to him,...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“Then the Lord said to Samuel: ‘Behold, I will do something in Israel at which both ears of everyone who hears it will tingle. In that day I will perform against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end....[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“And he said, ‘What is the word that the Lord spoke to you? Please do not hide it from me. God do so to you, and more also, if you hide anything from me of all the things that He said to you.’ Then Samuel told him everything,...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“Now this shall be a sign to you that will come upon your two sons, on Hophni and Phinehas: in one day they shall die, both of them. Then I will raise up for Myself a faithful priest who shall do according to what is in My heart and in My...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
Then He said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? Turn again, you will see greater abominations than these.” So He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’s house; and there, at the door of the temple of the Lord,...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
“‘Those who survive will escape and be on the mountains like doves of the valleys, all of them mourning, each for his iniquity. Every hand will be feeble, and every knee will be as weak as water. They will also be girded with...[ abbreviated | read entire ]
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