Thursday, July 2, 2009

When Emotions Run Away With Us III

Solomon had an
auspicious start. His promise would have made him unique in history if he lived up to it. His name is great, no doubt, but so were his follies. The few things that God said a king of God's people should not do, Solomon did with relish. Hording silver and gold, horses, and whores (oops, I meant "wives" and concubines) was enthusiastically pursued: humility, faithfulness and obedience were tossed aside in his never ending search for broader experience and self-fulfillment.

Solomon may have been a poster boy for
Maslow's theory, but he was a disgrace to the kingdom of God. He let his emotional, self-absorbed quest for fulfillment overwhelm every other consideration in life. The result was a kingdom at odds with him, an existential depression with life, and a broken fellowship with God. Are dreams of self-fulfillment really that important? What will such emotional satisfaction profit a man if it cost him his soul?

Living under the shadow of ruthless conquerors, who had designs on you, your family, your nation can put a burr under any one's saddle. As conquerors go, I think it's safe to say the Assyrians put the ooh! in ruthless. Is any wonder that a person living in such a shadow would have implacable hatred for those pagan enemies, even
to the extent of not wanting a warning word from God promising judgment to reach them?

silence of God is not having a chance. In hearing, faith can erupt. Think, "September 12th, 2001;" how did you feel about Arabs and Muslims that day? Were your thoughts evangelistic? Vengeance belongs with God, it's an emotional fury we can't handle. It blinds us to the eternal significance of our enemies' souls. Instead of being like Ananias in Damascus, vengeance makes us like Jonah in the drink. Do we want to see God's enemies become his friends, or are we blinded by vengeance, and useless to the miracle of grace.

Still more to come...