Thursday, May 03, 2012
Today’s Topic: Fortune and Destiny
Today’s Text: Isaiah 65:11-12 (NIV) “But as for you who forsake the LORD and forget my holy mountain, who spread a table for Fortune and fill bowls of mixed wine for Destiny, I will destine you for the sword, and you will all bend down for the slaughter; for I called but you did not answer, I spoke but you did not listen. You did evil in my sight and chose what displeases me.”
“Have a good day.”
“Live long and prosper.”
“It’s my destiny.”
“My horoscope says…”
All of the above statements are contradictory to faith in God.
Now before you close this blog down and spend the rest of the day fuming about what I just wrote, think about it. God is sovereign. He is always in control of all things. He has a specific purpose for our lives, and that purpose has already been revealed in the command of Jesus to go into all the world and make disciples. He has already determined our destiny based on our acceptance of or rejection of His Son Jesus Christ. He has condemned the practice of seeking guidance from the stars because it is the worship of the creation rather than the Creator.
I admire the way the Dr. Woodrow Kroll ends his Back to the Bible radio broadcasts – “Have a good and Godly day; for of what value is a good day if it is not also a Godly day?”
Pay attention to the warning of God in Isaiah 65:11-12. It is entirely possible and most probable that we have forsaken the Lord for the worldly worship of Fortune and Destiny.
Both terms used by God in this passage refer to pagan gods. According to the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, “the two names Gadh (the Hyades) and Menı̄ (the Pleiades) taken together give the meaning of the “Fortunate Number,” i.e. seven. The spreading of the table and mingling the wine to Gadh and Menı̄̌—at the beginning of the year to secure good fortune throughout its course, were therefore held about the time of the Passover, as if in parody, if indeed they were not a desecration of it: heathen rites added to one of the most solemn services of Yahweh.”
People were actually perverting the Passover – God’s ordained feast to reveal His plan of salvation for people through the shed blood of a Lamb – by seeking the favor and good fortune of false gods. They were throwing the dice as it were hoping to hit seven all the time. They sought the counsel of the stars when the should have sought the Creator of the stars.
It was the propagation of the problem of Eden, when Eve was convinced by Satan that God’s purpose and provision were not sufficient to fully satisfy the human heart. How could the people of Israel, after all God had done for them in delivering them from the bondage of slavery to sin and directing them to the Promised Land, turn their backs on Him and declare that He alone was not sufficient for them? How could they turn instead to the gods that are not gods to seek their fortunes and destinies?
STOP! I cannot condemn in others, past or present, what I do myself. There are things in my life that I trust to add fulfillment, joy, peace, and prosperity that stand in direct contradiction to absolute trust in God. I’m sure you have them too. Bank accounts, retirement plans, recreational activities, vacations, possessions, sports, Facebook, and the list could go on and on. If even one aspect of this list is allowed to become a means of providing personal value and worth to our lives, we are guilty of forsaking the LORD. We spread a table for Fortune and fill bowls of mixed wine for Destiny every time we use the creation to attempt to fulfill what only the Creator can provide. We are guilty of false worship. We even forsake the worship of God with God’s people to pursue these other gods.
My friends, as we enter into the summer season, we are all excited about the opportunities we will have to finally go have some fun and pursue some long-desired gratification and fulfillment through vacations, recreation, and our family sporting activities. Be very careful that all of it is done in the context of worship to the Creator, not as an attempt to replace what we have chosen to believe God can’t give. Our choices truly do reveal what we love and whom we worship. Do not forsake the LORD, or forget His holy mountain.