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Monday, September 13, 2010

Thorns in life

Sometime ago we talked about thorns...God even told the Israelites about thorns. He was clear in His instructions to the Israelites in Numbers 33: 50 - 55.

"While they were camped near the Jordan River on the plains of Moab opposite Jericho, the Lord said to Moses, “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel: When you cross the Jordan River into the land of Canaan, you must drive out all the people living there. You must destroy all their carved and molten images and demolish all their pagan shrines. Take possession of the land and settle in it, because I have given it to you to occupy. You must distribute the land among the clans by sacred lot and in proportion to their size. A larger portion of land will be allotted to each of the larger clans, and a smaller portion will be allotted to each of the smaller clans. The decision of the sacred lot is final. In this way, the portions of land will be divided among your ancestral tribes.  But if you fail to drive out the people who live in the land, those who remain will be like splinters in your eyes and thorns in your sides. They will harass you in the land where you live." (NLT)

While I believe that thorns have some "protective" use - i.e. preserving us from predators, living a life of compromise is definitely a thorny life...and a hard way to live. God warned the Israelites that they will be harrassed if they live a life of compromise.

The Bible puts this differently in the New Testament, friendship with the world is enmity with God (James 4:4b). Friendship with the world leads to compromise and of course a thorny life.

The other thing that can become thorns that choke the word of God in your life are worry* and the love of money which we well know is the root of all evil**.

Much as life is a bed of roses, there are some poisonous and avoidable thorns...identify them and avoid them. God help and bless us as we do...

* Matthew 13:22 - The seed that fell among the thorns represents those who hear God’s word, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the worries of this life and the lure of wealth, so no fruit is produced. (NLT)
**1 Tim 6; 10 - For the love of money is a root of all evils; it is through this craving that some have been led astray and have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves through with many acute [mental] pangs. (Amplified Bible)

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