…Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits: (Isaiah 30:10)
(First published: November 15, 2016)
At the time of the above verse, both Israel and Judah were in danger of an imminent invasion from the strong Assyrian empire to their north. Their instinctive reaction was to make an alliance with Egypt to save them. They were deeply concerned but not enough to turn to Jehovah. Isaiah preached to Judah, the southern kingdom of two tribes but wrote about Israel, the northern kingdom of ten tribes also.
Not wanting to mend their ways to get the help of their Jehovah God, they were in the market for smooth preaching that would tell them what they wanted to hear. It was an early version of political correctness. “Preach to us smooth things.” Elijah preached to the northern ten tribes and proclaimed a long drought and then called down fire from Heaven but that resulted only in excitement and surface repentance. In the long run, it amounted to nothing. Israel had to admit they had had a prophet among them but they were joined to their idols.
Fast forward to America. We have an ocean on our east side and west side. We have a friendly nation to the north and south of us. In our earliest days, we could have considered ourselves safe. That security was short lived: British ships brought their redcoat army across the ocean.
With the rise of technology, our enemies half-way around the world can easily get to us. We are becoming increasingly infiltrated with those who would destroy us with long-range missiles and cyber-attacks that can destroy our power grid. We have the beginnings of terrorism within our shores and enemies in the middle east who have vowed to conquer Israel first and then the United States. Some military experts are telling us we have allowed our military strength to shrink to pre-WW2 levels. Many of our military planes are grounded for lack of repairs. Our economy, necessary to support military strength, is stagnant. We are not taking good care of our veterans.
We may not be in as much danger of foreign invasion as we are from our lack of unity and determination to remain free as a nation. It is for sure that our nation is in the grip of “preach to us smooth things.” We have lost our Bible and because of that we have slaughtered almost 60 million babies in the womb. Every abortion stops a beating heart. Our national belief in absolute truth is greatly weakened.
The percentage of babies born into single-parent homes is rising every year. This results in automatic poverty and teenagers who are incomplete, undirected, insecure and angry. Our inner cities are plagued with gangs of angry, misguided teenagers. We have a great crisis of missing fathers. In most homes, the Bible is never read and prayer is never made (based upon many surveys). Still….
America has thousands of smooth preachers that market a “soft” message to please the masses who do not want a God who demands repentance and holy living. Feel-good doctrine is selling well.
The folks in Isaiah’s day were in trouble because they had forsaken Jehovah. Isaiah was sent by God to tell them to repent or perish. Through the help of their smooth preachers they did not repent. Assyria removed the best of the ten tribes of Israel and dispersed them throughout the Assyrian empire. They had no national identity, no land, and no houses. They were in grinding poverty; dressed in rags. Smooth preaching was not serving them well. Smooth preaching was not a good thing for them.
Judah was left to guard the Temple and to think about the disappearance of her sister-nation now exiled into Assyria. But, after 150 years to think it over, Judah would copy the rebellion of her sister and be carried off in chains to Babylon to think it over another 70 years. Her beautiful Temple was destroyed and her beautiful city of Jerusalem was leveled to the ground.
Nobody is smart enough to run his own life. I have spent most of my adult life listening to sad stories. So, I must tell you, “You are not smart enough to run your own life.” I read the Bible every day because I’m dirt-dumb. I’m not spiritual. I’m afraid to try to manage myself without God. The ultimate test is the grave and I don’t believe the party animals can raise me from the dead. But, there is one who has a track record of raising the dead and the Spirit of God who raised Him from the dead also dwells in me. He will raise me from the dead. (Rom.8:11)
The youth of every generation steps up to the plate and has a go at it. Before they know it, they are 50 and their energy is slipping. Parents begin to die off by the time the children reach 50 and they are shocked that they are no more invincible or immortal than their parents but are following lock-step behind them by a mere 20 years. Youth is destined to inevitable aging and death.
A middle-age man looks at the old man staring back at him in the bathroom mirror. He panics! A new red Thunderbird convertible with the wind blowing through his greying hair will fix it. He finds a younger woman which proves…something. His abandoned wife and nearly-grown children are out of the picture. Clearly, this man is not smart enough to run his own life. Preach to us “smooth things.”
●PAUL SAID: Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof (authority over them): from such turn away. (2 Timothy 3:5)
●JESUS SAID: The world hateth (me), because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil. (John 7:7)
●AHAB SAID: And it came to pass, when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou he that troubleth Israel? (1 Kings 18:17) Remember Ahab and Jezebel? They were such short-sighted fools!
●MICAIAH SAID: And the messenger that went to call Micaiah spake to him, saying, Behold, the words of the prophets (false prophets) declare good to the king with one assent; let thy word therefore, I pray thee, be like one of theirs, and speak thou good. And Micaiah said, As the LORD liveth, even what my God saith, that will I speak. (2 Chronicles 18:12-13)
●ISAIAH SAID: Woe to the rebellious children, saith the LORD, that take counsel, but not of me; and that cover with a covering, but not of my spirit, that they may add sin to sin: (Isaiah 30:1) Ω
Read Through the Bible in a Year
SEPTEMBER 20, 2017 - WEDNESDAY
A.M. Ecclesiastes 10-12
P.M. 2 Cor. 11:16-33
(BIBLE GATEWAY will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
A Good Memory Verse:
And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. (Luk 24:27)
Verse of the week:
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. (Eph 4:29-30)
Song for Today:
Cong. and Orchestra: Guide Me Oh Thou Great Jehovah(Royal Albert Hall, London)
(Wait several seconds. You may have to delete an ad.)