ARE WE SPIRITUALLY COMPLACENT AND INDIFFERENT?
God's Prayer Power - Session 11
Our Scripture Today: Malachi 1 - 14
Here is the Lord’s message to Israel, given through the prophet Malachi: “I have loved you very deeply,” says the Lord. But you retort, “Really? When was this?” And the Lord replies, “I showed my love for you by loving your father, Jacob. I didn’t need to. I even rejected his very own brother, Esau, and destroyed Esau’s mountains and inheritance, to give it to the jackals of the desert. And if his descendants should say, ‘We will rebuild the ruins,’ then the Lord Almighty will say, ‘Try to if you like, but I will destroy it again,’ for their country is named ‘The Land of Wickedness,’ and their people are called ‘Those Whom God Does Not Forgive.’” O Israel, lift your eyes to see what God is doing all around the world; then you will say, “Truly, the Lord’s great power goes far beyond our borders!” “A son honors his father, a servant honors his master. I am your Father and Master, yet you don’t honor me, O priests, but you despise my name.” “Who? Us?” you say. “When did we ever despise your name?” “When you offer polluted sacrifices on my altar.” “Polluted sacrifices? When have we ever done a thing like that?” “Every time you say, ‘Don’t bother bringing anything very valuable to offer to God!’ You tell the people, ‘Lame animals are all right to offer on the altar of the Lord—yes, even the sick and the blind ones.’ And you claim this isn’t evil? Try it on your governor sometime—give him gifts like that—and see how pleased he is! “‘God have mercy on us,’ you recite; ‘God be gracious to us!’ But when you bring that kind of gift, why should he show you any favor at all? “Oh, to find one priest among you who would shut the doors and refuse this kind of sacrifice! I have no pleasure in you,” says the Lord Almighty, “and I will not accept your offerings. “But my name will be honored by the Gentiles from morning till night. All around the world they will offer sweet incense and pure offerings in honor of my name. For my name shall be great among the nations,” says the Lord Almighty. “But you dishonor it, saying that my altar is not important and encouraging people to bring cheap, sick animals to offer to me on it. “You say, ‘Oh, it’s too difficult to serve the Lord and do what he asks.’ And you turn up your noses at the rules he has given you to obey. Think of it! Stolen animals, lame and sick—as offerings to God! Should I accept such offerings as these?” asks the Lord. “Cursed is that man who promises a fine ram from his flock and substitutes a sick one to sacrifice to God. For I am a Great King,” says the Lord Almighty, “and my name is to be mightily revered among the Gentiles.” (TLB)
He is talking about our spiritual complacency and indifference to Him.
As you read the scripture above, do you see God's compassion?
What does God want us to return to Him? He wants us to return His love.
How should we return His love?
Being faithful to Him, showing integrity, listening to Him, spending time with Him and following Him to mention a few.
Deeply Loved - God deeply loves us
Honor - We are to honor God
Our Best - We are to give God our very best.
The phrase, Deeply Loved, says how much God loves us. In Psalm 136:26 it says, "Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever." Also know that He loved us so much he gave His only son to die on a cross. To take our place so that we could have forgiveness of sin and be with Him for eternity. Romans 5:8 says, "God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
Honor - One of the ways we honor God is by loving Him. Deuteronomy 6:5 says, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might." Another way to honor God is with what we give Him. Proverbs 3:9 says, "Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce." Another way is obeying Him. John 14:15 says, "If you love me you will keep my commandments."
Our Best - When we think of giving God our best, we think in terms of finances. While it is true, the first 10%, tithe, goes to God, there is something even greater that we can give to God and it is our very best. Do you wonder what that is? It is ourselves. When we surrender all of ourselves to God, we give Him our best. When you give yourself totally to God, you are saying, here am I Lord, take me and make me all you created me to be. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away, behold, the new has come." The word of God says in Isaiah 43:18-19 , "Forget the former things, do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up, do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland."
God has wonderful plans for us, if we will but come to him and accept his precious son, Jesus Christ as our savior and through this He will come and abide in us giving us not just eternal life with Him, but a life with Him here on earth, a victorious life, as long as we are here. Jerimiah 29:11 says, " For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Forgive us God for our willful disobedience
for dishonoring Your name or offering false
worship, leading others into sin, breaking
Your laws, calling evil good, keeping Your
tithes and offerings for ourselves. Forgive us
for becoming arrogant and proud. I know you
can heal and mend our relationship with you.
So, I ask this in Jesus' name, restore our
relationship with You through Your love
and forgiveness, mercy and grace.
Help us not neglect You but to live
according to Your word. Help us to walk
with You in integrity and uprightness. Amen
May God bless you and your family this week.
If any of you would like prayer, you may email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions or comments, feel free to comment below.