From Obedience to Obstacle
We have been talking about the topic of OBEDIENCE with Vann’s youth for the past couple weeks. Last night we looked at Abram from Genesis 12:1-4 and learned from the life of Abram to OBEY God even when it doesn’t make sense, when you don’t know all the details, and even when you are afraid (Genesis 15:1).
Obedience can be a very challenging topic. We have a tendency t0 get comfortable and when God calls us to do something out of our comfort zone, we sometimes hesitate. It is also challenging when we begin to learn that something we have always assumed was good may not be as good for us as we thought. Maybe an older brother or sister was permitted to do some things that now you are told no to, not because they love you less but are better informed at this point.
My reading from the Bible this morning challenged me from 2 Kings 18:4b. “He broke into pieces the bronze snake that Moses made, for the Israelites burned incense to it up to that time. He called it Nehushtan (HCSB).” The “He” in this verse is the new King of Judah, Hezekiah. The Bible tells us Hezekiah became King when he was 25 years old. The Bible also says he did what was right in the LORD’s sight. Hezekiah obeyed God.
THOUGHT: If someone were to right of your life to date, would these words be able to be said of you and me?
What I found so convicting this morning from this passage was what Hezekiah did to the bronze serpent. Now the Bible says the king removed all the pagan, false worship spots. Now I understand that. It is easy for me to see everyone else’s worship problems. However, he then destroys the bronze serpent. WHY? Doesn’t Hezekiah know that Moses made that? What is he looking for, a short kingship? When I read Numbers 21:4-9, the bronze serpent was made by Moses to save people. Now we know the serpent didn’t save anyone, God did as they trusted Him. The bronze serpent existed because Moses was obedient.
However, obedience turned into an obstacle when the people began to worship the object and not God. The object was pointing to another. We read Jesus tell Nicodemus in the gospel of John, “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in Him will have eternal life (John 3:14-15).” God was saving those who trusted Him in the wilderness because ultimately He was sending a Savior to rescue the world from their sin.
The same God who said make it also said break it.
THOUGHT: What are those bronze serpents in our lives that at one time were there because of obedience, but are no longer necessary and actually an obstacle to obedience (fulfilling the Great Commission)? If God were to ask you to give up and break something that at one time was good, but now needs to go, could you do it?
What are your thoughts? What are some examples? Comment.