Friday, September 6, 2013
Today’s Topic: Oops!
Today’s Text: Daniel 5:27 (ESV) You have been weighed in the balances and found wanting;
Don’t use a screwdriver as a hammer.
Don’t use a knife as a screwdriver.
These are just two of the lessons I’ve learned the hard way. To be honest, there were many times that both substitutes worked, which only fueled my pride. It was that pride that eventually led to a time when the substitutes failed and the project ended badly. I’ve said “OOPS!” too many times.
Everything that has been made has an intended purpose. Granted, some things are multi-functional, but that was intended by the designer. When we use things for purposes that were not built into the original design, we can get into serious trouble.
That’s what happened to King Belshazzar in Daniel chapter five. Belshazzar was the son of King Nebuchadnezzar, whom God had humbled. His son knew what had happened. Yet Belshazzar rejected the work of God in His life and became proud – so proud that during a showy celebration he ordered that all of the vessels of gold and silver from the temple in Jerusalem be brought out and used as common serving and drinking utensils at the banquet. In his pride and desire to show off his wealth and power, the king chose to take things that were designed solely for the Lord’s work and use them for personal gain.
Immediately God responded. His hand wrote something on the wall that no one could read except Daniel. Here’s Daniel’s perspective on what happened.
22 And you [King Nebuchadnezzar’s] son, Belshazzar, have not humbled your heart, though you knew all this, 23 but you have lifted up yourself against the Lord of heaven. And the vessels of his house have been brought in before you, and you and your lords, your wives, and your concubines have drunk wine from them. And you have praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see or hear or know, but the God in whose hand is your breath, and whose are all your ways, you have not honored. 24 “Then from his presence the hand was sent, and this writing was inscribed. 25 And this is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, and PARSIN. 26 This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE, God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end; 27 TEKEL, you have been weighed in the balances and found wanting; 28 PERES, your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” Daniel 5:22-28 (ESV)
That night Belshazzar died, and Cryus became King. All because of pride, which always precedes a fall.
“OOPS!” I’ve used some of the Lord’s things for personal gain.
“OOPS!” I’ve taken money from my tithes and offerings to pay bills or buy new things.
“OOPS!” I’ve not followed through on pledges and commitments because my pride saw ways to use those resources for myself.
“OOPS!” I’ve lost the use of some things because God has immediately responded and taken them away to get my attention fixed back on Him alone.
“OOPS!” My heart has been weighed in the balances and been found wanting. What a horrible condition. Oh how I never want that statement to be true of me again.
Today, dear Lord, I commit myself again to your Holy Spirit’s correction to create in me a humble heart, so that all you have given me will be used for its intended purpose to serve you and not me!