IN ORDER…PHYSICAL REMINDER OF SPIRITUAL REALITY
2 KINGS 24-25; 2 CHRONICLES 36
AUGUST 19, 2017
2 Chronicles 36.21
So the message of the Lord spoken through Jeremiah was fulfilled. The land finally enjoyed its Sabbath rest, lying desolate until the seventy years were fulfilled, just as the prophet had said.
Why was the sabbatical year so important to God? Because…
“God always reserves something in the physical world, where man makes his living, to remind man that he (God) is the sovereign owner of everything” Ron Dunn
A tree. In the garden the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.
A day. Saturday the Sabbath.
A year. The Sabbatical year, every seven years to allow the land to rest. This is why they are in captivity for 70 years, they owed God 70 years of sabbatical years of rest.
A city, Jericho, The first City God gave them in the Promised Land.
The first 10% of all their crops.
God has always had a tithe to remind us that he not only is the sovereign owner of everything but He is also our provider. He is teaching us that the 90% He gives to us goes so much farther with Him as our provider than keeping the entire 100% without Him as our provider.
Look at each time this law was broken and you will see consequences of life without the blessing of God on His People. The current judgement and captivity of Israel has been caused by their refusal to give God His year. The one year rest (sabbatical) of the land, every seven years. God promised he would provide enough in the 6 years prior so they would not need to work the land. This would have been a great testimony to all the nations surrounding them. All the cultures were agricultural and worshipped pagan gods of fertility they believed cause their crops to be fruitful. Can you imagine a God so powerful that you could take an entire year off from farming because of the abundance He provided?
What is even more hurtful to God is that he trusted the Israelites with so much and wanted so little. They were not stealing from God like a thief that takes things to which he has no right but they were like embezzlers. People trusted by the owner to handle the owners possessions. A more deceitful and hurtful crime.
How are we doing with what God has given us? Do we live and give believing that God is the sovereign owner of everything we have? Do we truly live like God owns it all, gives it all and trusts us to distribute it in a way that furthers His kingdom and demonstrates his love and concern for hurting people? What do the people that know us think about our stewardship? Is it a testimony to them of the provision and power of God? Or are we in captivity like the Israelites? Not to the Babylonians but to our stuff?
“Heavenly Father I thank you for you provision in my life. I believe you are the sovereign owner of everything I see and cannot see. I am listening to you to tell me what you want done with your stuff with which you have entrusted me. I believe your word ‘He who is faithful in little will be ruler over much’. Empower me to be a good manager of all you have blessed me with. In Jesus name, Amen”