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Drawing a Wrong Conclusion from Apparent Success

Today’s Reading: 2 Chronicles 25:1-28:27

My selection: II Chronicles 28:8-11

The men of Israel took captive 200,000 of their relatives, women, sons, and daughters. They also took much spoil from them and brought the spoil to Samaria. 9 But a prophet of the Lord was there, whose name was Oded, and he went out to meet the army that came to Samaria and said to them, “Behold, because the Lord, the God of your fathers, was angry with Judah, he gave them into your hand, but you have killed them in a rage that has reached up to heaven. 10 And now you intend to subjugate the people of Judah and Jerusalem, male and female, as your slaves. Have you not sins of your own against the Lord your God? 11 Now hear me, and send back the captives from your relatives whom you have taken, for the fierce wrath of the Lord is upon you.”

My reflections: Favorable circumstances alone, without the light of God’s Word, are not a reliable guide when determining how one should act or live.

In a battle between Israel and Judah during the evil reign of King Ahaz, Israel was victorious. But Israel overplayed their hand in victory and drew the wrath of God. The prophet Oded warned them that their killing and spoiling of Judah was uncalled for. Oded told them that their sins were many and their victory did not imply that God was approving of all their evil practices. God merely used Israel as a means to punish Judah and King Ahaz.

There was proper and immediate response to the prophet’s message, by some of the chiefs, and the judgment of God was averted.

There is a principle to be observed here as we seek to know God’s will in our daily lives. Success in a matter must not, by itself, be interpreted as an indicator of God’s favor or a basis for deciding further action. This is why we need to walk in the light of His Word which is the objective measure of truth and righteousness.

My challenge: Just because you CAN do something does not imply that you SHOULD do it. Just because you are successful in something does not mean what you did was a good thing.

Seek to let God’s Word light your way today, not an unexamined presumption based on circumstances.

Tomorrow’s reading: 2 Chronicles 29:1-31:21

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