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The Window to the Heart

The Window to the Heart

Starvation. Hunger. Disease. Devastation. Death. Jeremiah’s heart was broke.  As he was looking around at the war-ravaged city of Jerusalem he saw pain, sorrow and suffering.  His eyes perceived the damage the Babylonian siege had caused.  His heart was impacted by what he saw visually with his eyes.  It is against this background we have this verse: Mine eye affecteth mine heart because of all the daughters of my city. (Lamentations 3:51)

In the middle of Jeremiah’s lamentation, he shares a universal truth that can be applied to every area of life.  IF you are blessed with eyesight, the application of this verse can change your life.

What we look at impacts our heart.  What we gaze upon influences our brain.  What we stare at informs our decisions.  The human eye can be the window of the heart. Here are several examples:

  • If I constantly “window shop” my heart will grow discontent with what I do not have – yet.
  • If I continually scroll through Amazon, my heart will desires things I may never truly need.
  • If a look at a beautiful person is nurtured and cuddled in my mind, it could become lust in my heart. Longing for someone that does not “belong” to us is sin – according to Jesus.
  • If I watch lots of TV or are constantly online, my eyes will see thousands of commercials that are designed to “pull at my heart strings” to cause me to buy their product. I tend to chuckle when I see doctor commercials: “Get sick so you can see me.” Or funeral home ads: “If you die, we can help!”
  • Media studies suggest that Americans see between 4,000 and 10,000 ads each day. (redcrowmarketing.com) “Mine eye affected mine heart” is a truth believed by advertising agencies. They have believed it for years.
  • Have you ever become hungry after seeing a commercial for a restaurant, soda, or chocolate?  It could be be after all your meals for the day, but the impact of the eye affects your heart – and your stomach.

What are you looking at?  Who are you looking to?  Where you keep your eyes focused is eventually where your heart will lead you.  That is why it is paramount to keep your eyes on Jesus.  As Hebrews 12:2 says, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.  Keep you focus on Jesus.

  • Do you find yourself unsatisfied in life? Look to Jesus.
  • Do you find yourself “wanting more” things this world offers? Get your eyes off the stuff and look to Jesus.
  • Do you find yourself without direction and purpose? Stop looking at the wrong things and get your eyes on Jesus.

Let what you look at impact your heart to cause a better view of Jesus.  Clean up the windowsill of your heart.  Guard your eyes.  Be disciplined with the TV.  Direct the eyes of your kids. Set Jesus in the window of your life (your eyes) and let your heart follow Him.

Find contentment in Jesus.

 

 

 

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What Kind of King Will You Be?

What Kind of King Will You Be?

And he arose, and went into the house; and he poured the oil on his head, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I have anointed thee king over the people of the LORD, even over Israel.  2 Kings 9:6

The meaning of life is a consideration that many throughout time have pondered.  Countless hours of thought and meditation have been invested into the deep questions of life such as:

  • “What is the purpose of my life?” or
  • “Why am I here?”

After being born again, you may ask a similar question:  “Now that I am a Christian, is there something I am called of God to do or to be?”

We can learn something about our purpose from a man named Jehu.

Jehu is a man who was a captain in the Israeli Army in the Northern Kingdom.  Judah is to the South of the land and comprises the Southern Kingdom.  The Northern Tribes and Southern Tribes are divided, having separate capitols and different kings.  Jehu is a military leader of men.

We also know that Jehu liked fast chariots.   2 Kings 9:20: informs us of Jehu’s reputation, “…the driving is like the driving of Jehu the son of Nimshi; for he driveth furiously.”  Jehu was known as a fast and daring chariot driver. 

In 2 Kings 9:1-7, we find that God tells Elisha to send a messenger to anoint Jehu to be King over The Northern Kingdom.  Ahab’s son, Jehoram is on the throne, but God tells Jehu that he is to become the next king.

The messenger goes  to a place called Ramoth Giliad to accomplish this anointing.  Ramoth Giliad “is a famous city in the mountains of Gilead; often called Ramoth-Gilead, and sometimes Ramath-Mizpeh, or the Watchtower, Jos 13:26.  It belonged to Gad, was assigned to the Levites, and became one of the cities of refuge beyond Jordan, De 4:43; Jos 20:8; 21:38.  It was famous during the reigns of the later kings of Israel, and was the occasion of several wars between these princes and the kings of Damascus, who had conquered it, and from whom the kings of Israel endeavored to regain it.  Here Ahad died, Joram was wounded, and Jehu was anointed king of Israel, 1Ki 22:1-53; 2Ki 8:28,29; 9:1-14; 2Ch 22:5,6.”  (American Tract Society Dictionary)

Jehu is anointed to be the next king.  Anointing is the Hebrew word “mashach,” and it means to rub with oil, to anoint; to consecrate; and also to paint. (Strongs)

We must understand that God anoints His children for certain callings and tasks.  He then sets us apart and equips us for fulfilling His calling.

The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament paints this word “anointing” with 4 insightful colors:

  • “First, to anoint an individual or an object indicated an authorized separation for God’s service. Moses anointed Aaron “to sanctify him”
  • Secondly, though the agent might be the priest or prophet, writers speak of anointed ones as those whom the Lord anointed (e.g. 1 Samuel 10:1; 2 Samuel 12:7). Such language underscores that it is God who is the authorizing agent; that the anointed is inviolable (1 Samuel 24:8ff.); and that the anointed one is to be held in special regard (cf. 1 Samuel 26:9ff.).
  • Thirdly, one may infer that divine enablement was understood as accompanying māshaḥ. Of both Saul and David it is said in connection with their anointing that “the Spirit of God came mightily upon him” (1 Samuel 10:6ff; 1 Samuel 16:13ff.).
  • Finally, in the form māshîaḥ, māshaḥ was associated with the coming promised deliverer, Jesus. Though this association with the term māshaḥ is not as prevalent in the OT as often supposed, the prospect of a righteous, Spirit-filled ruler is increasingly discernible in the OT (cf. Isaiah 9:1-7; Isaiah 11:1-5; Isaiah 61:1).”

The questions: “What is your purpose of my life?” and “Why am I here?” take on new meaning for the Christian.  We have an anointing of God like Jehu.  We have a new purpose and mission to fulfill.

Many people today are looking for value and purpose in all the wrong places.

  • Drinking alcohol and taking drugs are not a good motivation for living.
  • Having a boyfriend or girlfriend is not something to live life for.
  • Getting a new car (chariot for Jehu) is not a goal to be consumed with.
  • Setting the DVR and recording your favorite TV program is not the purpose for your life.

Consider God’s anointing of Jehu and see how much better it is to follow the call of God in your life.

God has a greater purpose for your life!  2 Kings 9:6 

Jehu could be more than a chariot driver.  Anyone can grow up and drive a car.  A car is not a good aspiration.

Jehu could be more than a captain in the army.  Thank the Lord for the Captains in the US Army today.  We are blessed for leaders of men who can lead others to victory, even when under fire.  Men and women are called to certain vocations and positions, but arriving at a position is not the same as fulfilling it.  God had more in plans for Jehu than merely filling a title or holding down a job.

Jehu could do more than simply have a family.  A person who is not saved can have a family just as much as a Christian can have a family.  Anyone who wants a family can have one today.  Some people are called to be single, and others are called to marriage.  At any rate, the Lord wanted more from Jehu.

Jehu was called of God to do something that no other person was called to do.  Jehu was called to be the next king.  Anyone can get a car, work a job, or start a family.  Only people seeing their anointing can do more.

God has a greater plan for your life!  2 Kings 9:7

Jehu had the opportunity to fulfill the Will of God.  Ahab’s family was to be executed because of Ahab’s and Jezebel’s intense sin.  God said in Deuteronomy 32:35 “To me belongeth vengeance, and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time: for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste.”  Judgment belongs to God.

Ahab had killed many innocent people.  1 Kings 18 reveals that prophets of Jehovah were persecuted.  There verse 4 says, “For it was so, when Jezebel cut off the prophets of the LORD, that Obadiah took an hundred prophets, and hid them by fifty in a cave, and fed them with bread and water.”  While Obadiah was trying to help God’s men, Ahab allowed his wife Jezebel to “cut off” or kill many.

Jezebel was a wicked woman.  1 Kings 21:15 says, “And it came to pass, when Jezebel heard that Naboth was stoned, and was dead, that Jezebel said to Ahab, Arise, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, which he refused to give thee for money: for Naboth is not alive, but dead.”  An innocent man is dead because a queen wanted her cowardly husband to have a piece of land that belonged to a man who refused to sell.

Jehu was able to fulfill the plan of God replacing Ahab’s descendants on the throne of the Northern Kingdom.  You and I are able to fulfill the will of God as we yield our lives to Him each day.

Jehu was able to fulfill the Word of God.  God had promised that none of Ahab’s decedents would be king in 1 Kings 21:29, “Seest thou how Ahab humbleth himself before me? because he humbleth himself before me, I will not bring the evil in his days: but in his son’s days will I bring the evil upon his house.”

Please note:  We are not to kill people who hate God.  God calls us to serve Him with love and to show love to those around us.  People who harm others in the name of their faith are tragically mistaken.  We fulfill God’s Word in a different way in the civil society today.  Sometimes soldiers carry out God’s plan, even today.  Sometimes God uses other nations to judge others in battle, etc.

For us everyday citizens, we are to be consecrated to be used of God where we live.  We can seek to fulfill the Word of God in our lives today with prayer, witnessing, and church participation.  We can go beyond merely living a conventional life, we can live a life consecrated and set apart to the Lord.

God has a greater promise for your life! 2 Kings 10:30

The promises of God are better than the promises of the world, our flesh, or the devil.  If Jehu refused the anointing of God on his life, we would only know he liked fast chariots.  That is not much to be known for.  Sometimes when at funeral services it is sad to hear of the lifetime achievements of a person that only lived for temporal things.  The Lord has more for us than the here and now.  You can do better than being known for a nice car.

If Jehu refused God’s anointing, he would not have become King.  None of his children would have been kings.  He would have had a job in the army, a chariot, and a family, but he would not have gone on to find the promises of God.  God promised Jehu that his family would have a king on the throne for the next 4 generations.  That was God’s promise to Jehu.  God will not give you a kingdom today, but the Lord sees you as a king with great potential.

We must understand that God anoints His children for certain callings and tasks.  He then sets us apart and equips us for fulfilling His calling.

In Revelation 1:6 we discover how the Lord looks at Christians today:  “And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.”  God sees you as a king!

What kind of king will you be today?  If you study Jehu’s life, he goes on to remove all the Baal worship in the Land.  He removes all of Ahab’s descendants from succession to the throne, and also executes wicked Jezebel as part of God’s judgment on Ahab and Jezebel for their extreme wickedness.

However, King Jehu does not regard God’s Word in his reign.  He does not obey the Law that the Lord had given to Moses.  Jehu allows other false gods to be worshipped and he became known as an “ungodly” king.  What a sad testimony for a man who was set apart and anointed to serve the Lord.

In light of Jehu’s life, 1 Peter 2:9-10 may take on new meaning to you: “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:  Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

What kind of king will you be today?  Be a king who fulfills the Will and Word of God.  Anyone can accomplish the temporal things of life.  You have been anointed a king.  Be more.  Be a king for the Lord.