Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Recovering Lost Territory

We all feel like we have lost territory at times. Maybe we were at one time very disciplined in an area then we find that discipline has waned and a lack of consistency has resulted in consequences that we don't like.

"Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses." Josh 1:3

Taking the land God has given us is one thing but regaining it after it has been lost is a different dynamic because now we must contend with a history of failure.

2 Kings chapters 18 and 19 deal with this very issue. It speaks of a young idealist King of Judah named Hezekiah. The nation of Israel was split into two parts at this time in history because of internal struggles. Judah was one part and Israel was another. There had been one bad King after another in both territorie for quite a while before Hezekiah became King. Hezekiah was a Godly man and began to fight back and win lost territory. It is really a good read. Try reading it in the NKJV or NASB if you get a chance.

I love the Bible because it gives such unvarnished accounts of history. Hezekiah doesn't take back the land in the way that Joshua once captured it. Hezekiah takes territory back but pays a high price and ends up with a country much more powerful than his breathing down his neck. Judah is at the verge of disaster and the enemy has a skilled communicator named Rabshakeh who knows just what to say to assault Hezekiah using words and political leverage.

The whole thing has financial ramifications also. Ever try to throw money at a problem hoping it will go away? Hezekiah did just that. This King did all he knew how to do but the answer was to go to God. In this case the man of God.

We all have our own relationships directly with God in this age but there is still something special about being accountable to someone. Hezekiah was a King, and a good one, but he made himself accountable and in that humility God answered.

" 'Therefore thus says the LORD concerning the king of Assyria, 'He will not come to this city or shoot an arrow there; and he will not come before it with a shield or throw up a siege ramp against it. By the way that he came, by the same he will return, and he shall not come to this city,' declares the LORD. 'For I will defend this city to save it for My own sake and for My servant David's sake.' " 2 Kings 19:32-34

I like that God didn't say, "You have been a good man Hezekiah so I will spare the nation." The blessing is because of God's character and because of association. All blessing is by association.

In our case it is our association to Jesus and I dare say that it is also linked to our willing association to people who make a stand for God. There are no lone rangers in Christianity.

My burden is light because of Christ but the road is certain to be treacherous. I don't want to travel it alone if I don't have to. There is territory to recover and I want it all back. In humility we can take new ground that has been given to us by God and we can recover the lost ground as well.

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