Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Milky Toast?

I read this passage by John Eldredge from his book Fathered by God in one of my devotional readings today. It has challenged my, what might be called my milk-toasty, view of God today, thought I would pass it on… Male Encourager Coach CR NWA

The Spirit Of The Lord Came Upon Him
11/08/2009

The Philistines went up and camped in Judah, spreading out near Lehi. The men of Judah asked, “Why have you come to fight us?” “We have come to take Samson prisoner,” they answered, “to do to him as he did to us.” Then three thousand men from Judah went down to the cave in the rock of Etam and said to Samson, “Don’t you realize that the Philistines are rulers over us? What have you done to us?” He answered, “I merely did to them what they did to me.” They said to him, “We’ve come to tie you up and hand you over to the Philistines.” Samson said, “Swear to me that you won’t kill me yourselves.” “Agreed,” they answered. “We will only tie you up and hand you over to them. We will not kill you.” So they bound him with two new ropes and led him up from the rock. As he approached Lehi, the Philistines came toward him shouting. The Spirit of the LORD came upon him in power. The ropes on his arms became like charred flax, and the bindings dropped from his hands. Finding a fresh jawbone of a donkey, he grabbed it and struck down a thousand men. Then Samson said, “With a donkey’s jawbone I have made donkeys of them. With a donkey’s jawbone I have killed a thousand men.” (Judg. 15:9–16 NIV)

A Sunday school story? Perhaps. Though I have never heard the lesson explained, “And this, children, is what happens when the Spirit of God comes upon a man.” Yet that is clearly the lesson of the passage. Samson becomes a great and terrible warrior when, and only when, the Spirit of God comes upon him. The rest of the time he’s just short of an idiot. What does this story tell us about the God who the Spirit is? And it’s not just Samson, my friends. “So the Spirit of the LORD came upon Gideon,” and Gideon went to war (Judg. 6:34 NASB). “Now the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah,” and he went to war (Judg. 11:29 NASB). “And the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David,” and one of the first things he did was kill Goliath (1 Sam. 16:13 NASB). I repeat my question: What does that tell us about the God who the Spirit is?

2 comments:

  1. Thanks Tim for posting this. Great words

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  2. Gail McConnell: Amen to this as the Word says it will be when the Spirit of the Lord comes upon His people Who trust in Him and obey Him. It is not in my intellect or in my analyzing God that the Spirit of the Lord comes upon me. It is in my mournful cry and supplication that the Spirit of the Lord comes upon me as the psalmist witnessed in Psalm 121: 164-171:

    Seven times a day and all day long do I praise You because of Your righteous decrees. Great peace have they who love Yourlaw; nothing shall offend them or make them stumble. I am hoping and waiting (eagerly) for Your salvation, O Lord, and I do Your commandments. Your testimonies have I kept (haring, receiving, loving, and obeying them); I love them exceedingly! I have observed Your precepts and Your testimonies, for all my ways are (fully known) before You. Let my mournful cry and supplication come (near) before You, O Lord; give me understanding (discernment and comprehension) according to Your word for assurance and promise).Let my supplication come before You; deliver me according to Your word!"

    Jesus calls me blessed not because of my intellect, analyzing, position, or abilities. He calls me blessed because I mourn for Him. He calls me blessed because I cry out in supplication to Him to deliver me from my own self and from the selves of others who for whatever reason attempt to rob my soul of joy, peace, and love. Oswald Chambers wrote that until I can stand before the meanest person and still love, I know not the love of Christ.

    Today people, even my brothers and sisters in Christ reject me, abandon me, betray me, and gossip about me. Today not every believer is glad for me. Today I am ok with that for I know that all believers are on a journey of purification. The journey is not the destination; it is the process. Today I live for Jesus just as Jesus lived for the Father. Today I know that as I grow into an oak tree of righteousness, I can count on the fact that not everyone will be happy for me...not everyone will validate me...not everyone will
    approve of me. Guess what! That is Good News because as it was for the Master, so it will be for me who follows Him. And yet I no longer dwell on this because my faith clings only to One, Jesus Christ, the Vine. He gives me the courage to say and do that which He tells me to say and do. Just as He had the Father's approval, so I have the Father's approval for Him to live for Christ and for a bigger purpose than me or man's approval of me.
    I am lost in His love today and I am covered by His blood regardless of people and regardless of circumstances. With God's Will living in me and moving through me through the Word and indwelling power of the Holy Spirit, there will be no more "milky toast" for me.

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