Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Not many people wear the W.W.J.D. bracelets any more. This bracelet was designed to be worn as a reminder to ask the question “What would Jesus do?” when we were faced with a decision or confronted with a problem. I hope we have not let the fading of a fad change the foundation of our faith. God still requires us to take action that models His attributes in every aspect of our lives.
The Israelites are being seduced by the Moabites in an attempt by Balaam to become wealthy and powerful. It was Balaam who devised the plan to overthrow the Israelites by turning them away from the Lord rather than by military force. The Moabites were very afraid of the power of God’s people. They knew they did not have the military strength to defeat them, so they weakened them by immorality and idolatry, taking away their source of strength from the Lord.
Numbers 25:10-13 The LORD said to Moses, “Phinehas son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, the priest, has turned my anger away from the Israelites; for he was as zealous as I am for my honor among them, so that in my zeal I did not put an end to them. Therefore tell him I am making my covenant of peace with him. He and his descendants will have a covenant of a lasting priesthood, because he was zealous for the honor of his God and made atonement for the Israelites.”
The seduction of the people was so blinding that one man named Zimri actually brought a Midianite woman back to his family to share right in front of Moses and the Elders. The leadership wept over the sin of the people. The punishment for their sins was already underway. The tribal leaders had already begun the killing of all the men who had been seduced into worshiping false gods. Yet this man was so intent on getting what he could for immediate pleasure that he ignored the consequences of his choices. What severe blindness comes over us when we choose to please self rather than God. What brazen disregard we have for the holiness of God.
Phinehas, the son of the high priest, took action. He went into the tent where the man and the woman were involved in fornication, and he killed them both with one thrust of the spear. God commends him for his action, stating clearly that Phinehas acted exactly as God would have acted. Can there be any greater commendation on a life than that? Is that not to be our ongoing response to sin around us today?
Now be careful, I am not advocating killing sinners, unless we are willing to start with self. What I am suggesting is that we take a stand against sin when God clearly does.
Over the years I have been disheartened by the stories of major denominations in our country that are being split over social issues like abortion, gay rights, and equality. They are debating what the Bible really says about these issues. I weep that the spiritual blindness caused by the desire for personal pleasure is being justified with the terms unity and tolerance. What is there to debate about sin? God is holy, and he rejects all that is not. We must be bold and courageous to stand against all such attempts to seduce the people of the world into the worship of false gods that satisfy personal passions.
My friends, take to heart God’s commendation of Phinehas. Make it your personal goal to do what God would do. Stand against sin. Stand for righteousness. Choose wisely, for one choice to please self could blind you for life.