Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Rainbows and Promises, Two

Sometimes in the Midst of the Storm.

Last time we discussed what a Rainbow is. It is a sign. A tangible, physical, visible, sign of the Promise God made to Noah following the Flood. It is a sign to all mankind, that no matter how bad the Storms of life might be, God is in charge, and God can,,,,

Assure you that He is with you.
Protect you and keep you safe.
Restore anything lost.

There were three men that saw Rainbows in The Word of God. First, of course was Noah, When God created the first Rainbow. Ezekiel, who saw the Rainbow in the midst of the Storm. And John, who we will discussed soon, who saw the Rainbow BEFORE the Storm even came.

Today, we will discuss being in the midst of a Storm, and why we should not be surprised at seeing the Rainbow at the same time. Let's go to,,,,

Ezekiel 1:
1 Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the river of Chebar, that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.

2 In the fifth day of the month, which was the fifth year of king Jehoiachin's captivity,

3 The word of the Lord came expressly unto Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of the Lord was there upon him.
So here is Ezekiel, in the middle of living in captivity, some would call a major Storm in life. In the fourth year of Jehoiakim, Father of Jehoiachin, the first carrying away of Jewish captives to Babylon took place. Among them was Daniel. The second was under Jehoiachin, when Ezekiel was carried away. Ezekiel was to be the Ministering Priest to all the people Captive under King Jehoiachin.

The Word declare that all though they were held Captive, he remained Faithful to God. So there comes a day when Ezekiel sees a vision...
27 And I saw as the colour of amber, as the appearance of fire round about within it, from the appearance of his loins even upward, and from the appearance of his loins even downward, I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round about.

28 As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spake.
Now the Sound of the voice of the Lord is described in The Word as the sound of Thunder ( Psalms 29:3 Psalms 29:4 ). Also as the "sound of tumult," as in Jeremiah 11:16 . From an Arabic root, meaning the "impetuous rush of heavy rain." Jump ahead to,,,

Ezekiel 2:
1 And he said unto me, Son of man, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak unto thee.

2 And the spirit entered into me when he spake unto me, and set me upon my feet, that I heard him that spake unto me.

3 And he said unto me, Son of man, I send thee to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that hath rebelled against me: they and their fathers have transgressed against me, even unto this very day.
So here, God Appoints Ezekiel to become the "Son of Man." Now of course, we know this phrase better as what Jesus called Himself. Notice this as well "And the spirit entered into me." It was not until Jesus came that we received the ability to accept the Spirit and become adopted into the Family of God. So, this is a rather unique event. This means that God chose Ezekiel in a very special way, for a very specific reason.
5 And they, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear, (for they are a rebellious house,) yet shall know that there hath been a prophet among them.

6 And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.

7 And thou shalt speak my words unto them, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear: for they are most rebellious.

8 But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee.

9 And when I looked, behold, an hand was sent unto me; and, lo, a roll of a book was therein;
God tells Ezekiel, it does not matter if they accept what you say, or not. It is simply his job to tell them the truth. What is it that God gave Ezekiel to eat? His Word. The Bible. He told Ezekiel to fully digest His Word. Make it apart of him. He did not say read it. He did not say highlight it. He did not say it is good to know what it is. He told Ezekiel to eat it. Digest it. Make it apart of his very being. This is what God tells us to do as well, as His Children.

The Bible is not a History Book. It is not something written by Man. It is the Living Word of God. Having it become a Part of you, means that when the Storms come, even in the midst of the Storm, you will be comforted and you will not be deceived. You will KNOW what God says about this or that. You will KNOW, what God wants you to do, in any situation.

Now really pay attention to this next part. It is important.

Ezekiel 3:

4 And he said unto me, Son of man, go, get thee unto the house of Israel, and speak with my words unto them.

5 For thou art not sent to a people of a strange speech and of an hard language, but to the house of Israel;

6 Not to many people of a strange speech and of an hard language, whose words thou canst not understand. Surely, had I sent thee to them, they would have hearkened unto thee.

7 But the house of Israel will not hearken unto thee; for they will not hearken unto me: for all the house of Israel are impudent and hardhearted.

8 Behold, I have made thy face strong against their faces, and thy forehead strong against their foreheads.

9 As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead: fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.
Did you catch it? "For thou art not sent to a people of a strange speech and of an hard language, but to the house of Israel; Not to many people of a strange speech and of an hard language, whose words thou canst not understand. Surely, had I sent thee to them, they would have hearkened unto thee."

What God just told Ezekiel is that He is sending him to His Chosen People. The Jews. He was not sending Ezekiel to the Gentiles. However, if He did, "they would have hearkened unto thee." So why is God sending Ezekiel to people that will not hear him? And not to those that would. Because of His love for His chosen People. Because of yet another Promise. One made to Moses. Then God tells Ezekiel this Spiritual Truth..
17 Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me.

18 When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.

19 Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.

20 Again, When a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumbling-block before him, he shall die: because thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand.

21 Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul.
For he to know to do good, and chose it not, to him it is Sin. Without warning, Sin can and still will, kill you. But if you are aware of your Sin, you may turn away and Live. If not, you condemn yourself. God wants everyone to know the Truth. This way, you have a chance to repent and live. Later we see God telling Ezekiel that HE, God, was coming to collect his scattered Sheep. In...

Ezekiel 34:
10 Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I am against the shepherds; and I will require my flock at their hand, and cause them to cease from feeding the flock; neither shall the shepherds feed themselves any more; for I will deliver my flock from their mouth, that they may not be meat for them.

11 For thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I, even I, will both search my sheep, and seek them out.

12 As a shepherd seeketh out his flock in the day that he is among his sheep that are scattered; so will I seek out my sheep, and will deliver them out of all places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day.

13 And I will bring them out from the people, and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land, and feed them upon the mountains of Israel by the rivers, and in all the inhabited places of the country.

14 I will feed them in a good pasture, and upon the high mountains of Israel shall their fold be: there shall they lie in a good fold, and in a fat pasture shall they feed upon the mountains of Israel.

15 I will feed my flock, and I will cause them to lie down, saith the Lord God.

16 I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick: but I will destroy the fat and the strong; I will feed them with judgment.

17 And as for you, O my flock, thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I judge between cattle and cattle, between the rams and the he goats.
In the middle of the Storm, God appears before Ezekiel. First he tells him to eat The Word. Get to understand God's Will. His plan and purpose. Then He tells him to go forth and Preach His Word to His people. Then, He tells him that it does not matter their response, but rather Ezekiel's obedience to follow God's Will. Then, He finally tells Ezekiel, that even though they may not hear him, even though the Storm may seem unbearable, God is in charge, and He will take over. He tells Ezekiel that He, God, will fire those in charge of leading His Children, and HE will take over the situation. Sound familiar? Think Jesus.

In some Storms that may come, they may seem overwhelming and unbearable, yet God tells us, not to fear. Just be obedient to Him, and He will take charge. Even in the midst of the Storm, look for the Rainbow. God is always with us, and will always be with us. If we are obedient to Him, even if He has to take charge, He will always be faithful to us.

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

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