Smarter than God…
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children. (Hosea 4:6)
EDUCATION HAS LONG BEEN THE KEY TO SUCCESS IN THIS LIFE. It’s not a sure guarantee, but it has a good track record. We want the best if it’s surgery or doing our taxes or landing in a cross-wind. Regardless of where you got your degree, you are going to have to get into the box in a few years. Are you prepared for that? What kind of knowledge do we need to face the box? Hosea said the problem with his nation was that they had rejected the knowledge of God.
WE ARE SLOWLY PLODDING THROUGH THE BIBLE again in our Monday-Saturday Bible reading. We don’t speed read it. We read the footnotes, look up comments in other books, chase words, etc. We have come to Hosea, the faithful prophet to the Northern Kingdom of Israel, the 10 tribes that split away after Solomon’s death. Hosea lived and ministered in northern Israel. Amos preached there too but lived in the southern kingdom.
WE CAME ACROSS THESE WORDS TODAY: They eat up the sin of my people, and they set their heart on their iniquity. And there shall be, like people, like priest: and I will punish them for their ways, and reward them their doings. (Hosea 4:8-9)
“THE CAUSE OF MAN'S PROBLEM IS LACK OF KNOWLEDGE. It does not stem from a shortage of information, but rather from rejection of information. “They” (v.8) are the problem. That is, the priesthood. They have not helped the people face their sin and deal with it. Rather, they have gloried and taken pleasure in the sin of the people. Like people, like priest: The Priest of God is corrupted and made like the sinning people, not vice versa.” (King James Study Bible)
GOD TOLD HOSEA THAT AS THEIR DAUGHTERS AND WIVES had sex relations with the priests of their idolatry, God was not going to punish them because the husbands and fathers were whoring after women when they sacrificed to the heathen gods and carried out their rituals. It had become a sordid mess. Everybody was partying in sexual frenzies as they loaded up on wine and carried on like animals. It was a picture of what they were doing against God in bowing down to these gods and forsaking the worship of Jehovah with whom they had a covenant (Deuteronomy 28).
HOSEA PLEADED WITH SOUTHERN JUDAH: v.15 “Though thou, Israel, play the harlot, yet let not Judah offend: and come not ye unto Gilgal.” That is, Judah, you just stay put and don’t come north into these obscene places and get involved. Elijah showed up and called down fire on Mt. Carmel and the people talked about following God. But that was skin deep. They never changed and ended up as slaves.
IN 722 ASSYRIA CAME DOWN AND CARRIED ISAREL OFF AS SLAVES AND THEY were never heard from again. It took 150 years, but Israel’s sister: Judah, followed into the same ugly departure from God and after the ministry of Jeremiah and others, was deported into Babylon in three deportations: 605 B.C., 597 B.C. and 586 B.C. Thousands were slain by the Babylonian soldiers. They resisted Babylon, God’s appointed caretaker for them and brought the blood bath upon themselves.
BAD THINGS HAPPENED TO ISRAEL WHEN THE OLD LEADERS DIED OFF and the younger generation was left to take their place. Young people tend to know a lot before they know much at all and make a lot of mistakes that mess up their lives for years to come. One of the mistakes young people are making today is that they think they know more than they actually do. They think they are a lot smarter than their parents. If they have been to college, they may have been indoctrinated by some of the professors with some ideas that don’t work well.
“THE PROBLEM WITH A LITTLE LEARNING is that the one who has it may not know it’s only a little.” Somebody told me that in my late teens and I adopted it as one of the foundation timbers of my life. I still ask questions. It has served me well. I have made it a practice all my adult life; seeking out older people who obviously know more than I know and asking them all kinds of questions. Everybody, even little kids, know things I don’t know.
THE TEENAGER WHO KNOWS EVERYTHING CAN'T BE TAUGHT ANYTHING. It’s like trying to pour more water into a glass that’s already full. I feel sorry for the young people who are afflicted with this handicap. They will have to learn some of their lessons the hardest way: by experience. Experience is a good teacher, but the tuition is terribly high.
THE PRODIGAL SON THAT JESUS TALKED ABOUT was like this. He didn’t learn anything until he had spent everything he had and came to himself in the hog pen. A lot of people begin with God in the hog pen. I’ve been meeting them all my adult life. Men who had done well with their lives but didn’t amount to anything until they were humbled in the hog pen.
ANOTHER BIG MISTAKE THAT YOUNG PEOPLE MAKE is to think that worthwhile learning is in almost every book in the library, except for the Bible. They get it backwards. You’re not educated until you have a firm grip on the Bible and it has a firm grip on you. The Bible is the only book that tells the future. The Bible tells you where you came from, what you’re doing here, and where you’re going. I’ve been in the Library of Congress in Washington several times. The old stone building is a piece of art. I like to just walk around in it and look at all the books and look at George Washington’s false teeth he had made from wood.
BUT, I MUST TELL YOU THIS: there is only one book in that vast library that reliably tells the future. It’s the Bible. People read everything but the Bible and it leaves them as dumb as an ox about life and the hereafter. Reading is dropping off drastically today and people are not reading much. But of those who do still read, not many of them choose to read the Bible. However, there are some who read their Bibles every day and have done so for most of their lives.
YOU DON'T KNOW YOURSELF UNTIL YOU SEE WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS ABOUT YOU. Few people who attend Bible-believing churches read their Bibles. Few of them have read their Bible through even one time. I’ve talked with many of them and I have seen the national surveys that keep track of these things.
I STILL DON'T KNOW THE BIBLE LIKE I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW IT and I’ve read it through several times. The reason most people don’t read the Bible is because they don’t think it’s worth reading. Please change your mind about that. We think we are smart enough, so we don’t walk with Him. Please change your mind about that. Let’s change everything that needs changing. OK? God would like to hear from you. He would like to meet with you because He loves you. He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. (Psalm 91:1)
Read Through the Bible in a Year
OCTOBER 9, 2018 – TUESDAY
A.M. Isaiah 41-42 P.M. Colossians 2
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
A good verse to memorize:
All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. (Isaiah 53:6)
Song for Today:
My Hope Is Built (2:11) (Menonite Choir)
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