I see a parallel between Israel sitting at the edge of the Jordan River, preparing to obey God’s commands, and the dilemma facing America and the church of Jesus in America, as Islamic extremism is ushered in by leaders who do not recognize an enemy.
Without taking political sides, this has become a God-given moment to ask, “What has God commanded us to do, and where do we stand regarding his commandments today?”
Numbers concludes with God commanding Israel to “take possession of the land and live in it, for I have given you the land” (Numbers 33:53, NASB). But God never said it would be easy: “If you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land…those who remain will become…thorns in your sides…and as I plan to do them, so I will do to you” (33:55-56, NASB).
It is one thing to have God’s blessing, but quite another to disobey his commands. By the time we finish the Old Testament, we will see that Israel failed to drive out God’s enemies and in time, God drove Israel out from the land he had given them.
Who, then, are our enemies and what are God’s commands for the church of Jesus Christ in America? What are the temptations we face leading to disobedience and disunity? Have we had repeated warnings unheeded that have now brought thorns to our sides in judgment?
Is it too late? Will God do to us as he has done to our enemies in the past?
As the storm clouds gather, allow me to make a passionate suggestion: commit to read John 13 – 17 at least ten times over the next six months as you follow along with this “If My People” series. God’s promises for us are there and waiting for us to decide how the Cycle will turn out for us. Some promises are conditional, waiting for us to decide. Jesus concludes with a prayer to himself for us to be brought to perfect unity – how could this not be his final command to us?
Never forget that the Cycle concludes with God’s never-ending love, our repentance, and God’s restoration.
Our enemies are not our brothers and sisters in Christ. Neither are they those who have not yet found Christ as Messiah and Savior. Read Ephesians 6:12 right now. Our enemy came first in the form of a talking snake. Today he comes in the form of a murderous terrorist.
Our enemy is evil itself.
We stand at the Jordan or our times. Will we cross to perfect unity knowing it will not be easy but trusting God with everything, or will we continue the cycle until God has seen enough?