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THE CEDARS OF LEBANON AND THE OAKS OF BASHAN

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THE CEDARS OF LEBANON AND THE OAKS OF BASHAN

THE CEDARS OF LEBANON AND THE OAKS OF BASHAN

Author Guardian

Psalm 29-31,

THE CEDARS OF LEBANON AND THE OAKS OF BASHAN

Lord God In Jesus name let your powerful and mighty word speak now in Jesus name amen

Now we are going to look at three portions of Gods word to begin with and then we shall go to Psalms, these words or portions , came to me over the last week and they seem to go together and you will see how as we go .

I had no idea at the time of typing how these

three things brought to mind would come together and as usually happens , only after

typing is the message revealed

So lets look firstly at the three portions of scripture, or snapshots.

If I were to say to another Christian " A Christian friend I Know is going to marry a prostitute....what do you think they would say ?

Its sounds a bit unscriptural does'nt it ?

"Marry a prostitute ? " they would say, " why " and " thats not scriptural, thats not what God would want ? " how do you believe people would react ?

First we look to Hosea chapter 1

Many see Hosea as a minor prophet but I see him as a major prophet, why ? because he did'nt just speak out the words given to him by God , but he lived them

This was a major thing, not a minor thing

Hosea Heard God speak and did what he heard, in fact Hosea's whole life would have been changed

You know how life can change when you meet someone ? you know that you have to start

to change your life pattern to encompass that person ? you start to realise that your life is changing and that you no longer live for yourself ? but you now have to think about the other person ?

Imagine for one moment hearing God speak to you and He tells you to marry a prostitute ?

He tells you who to marry and gives you the name and you know that this person is

sharing their body with other people !!

How do you think you would feel ?

To know that you are going to live and sleep and talk and walk with that person day by day and share your life with them and know that it is not just you but you are sharing this person with many many other folk !!

And so the word of the Lord came to Hosea and he was told to marry a prostitute

Some translations put gomer as “a wife of harlotry” (RSV), “a harlot wife” (NAB),

or simply “a whore”

In other other words she was unfaithful and had many men and many relationships

Now you may think "Why did God tell Hosea to marry a harlot ? "

And so Hosea went and found himself a wife of reputation, a whore, a harlot, a prostitute.

He married this woman " Gomer " and they had children...the first child was named

Jezreel.

And then Gomer the wife of Hosea and of many bore a daughter and they named her

Loruhamah and Loruhamah when the time had come and she conceievd bore a child

named Loammi, for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God. for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; !!

OOooooo what a divorce

O you see what a major thing Hosea did to marry Gomer, imagine having your life changed like this, Imagine having your name dragged through the mud, Imagine what people must have said !! , imagine what people must have thought ?

Imagine your name being associated with Gomer !! imagine the turmoil in your mind as you give away your life to Gomer.. knowing that you are sharing your body with others ?

Do you really believe Gomer changed ? when married ? do you really believe that her

children where children of Hosea ? or were they children of another ?

I wonder if Gomer ever changed ? I wonder if God was able to bring forth children from another ? I wonder if after all this children were born from another as numerous as the sands on the shore and as the stars in the sky ?

What a major prophet was Hosea to give his life like this ? because God told him to

and to put up for the rest of his life with the sneers and the rejection from others

I wonder how this would go down in our modern day Church or Christian lifes ?

doing something that means being rejected not just by friends and family but by your

Christian fellow friends because " God told you too "

And yet here was Hosea married to Gomer a reflection of peoples hearts, a reflection

of the house of Israel, a reflection and mirror of what was going on deep down in peoples hearts and lifes and not so deep in others, in fact open worship of gods made of wood and stone

Here was Hosea being a mirror image to the nation of Israel, I bet he was popular ?

" O look...theres Hosea, thats what I have inside me . looks ugly doesn't it ? "

God had cried out time and time again " REPENT...TURN...COME BACK TO ME "

You see God was married to the nation of Israel and Israel was married to God ...

But they committed adultery in their hearts and looked away from their partner

They were harlots and whores seeking to find love in the wrong places...

They sought after all kinds of partners, all kinds of gods, all kinds of gods of the heart.

Their hearts were not for God , their hearts were rejecting God, their hearts were far from God, their hearts were committing adultery and seeking relationships elsewhere

Psalms 29:5 The voice of the LORD breaketh the cedars; yea, the LORD breaketh

the cedars of Lebanon.

And so God was looking at divorce, God could not see any relationship, the people were not talking to Him but talking to others, Gods heart was broken, Gods sought them but they did not seek Him,

Whats the use of being married ..if your partner does'nt talk to you and does'nt want to know you and does'nt seem to care and goes after others ? when your partner commits adultery again and again and again and again

When your partner in life ...the person you are married to , seeks other partners and you have to share your bed ? when you have to share your partner with others ?

But this is exactly what the nation of Israel was doing and this is exactly what Gomer was doing, Hosea and his relationship with Gomer was the reflection and mirror of God and the house of Israel

The nation of Israel was wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked before God

God could see beyond the exterior walls of peoples temples, beyond the outward

appearances and He could see into the lifes of every single person and every single heart and He saw them as wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked

I don;'t imagine Gomer stopped sleeping around anymore than the nation of Israel stopped committing adultery and anymore than some even now in this day and age seek after false gods of the heart

And I wonder if after a while God says " I want divorce ?"

Hosea 1:4 and will cause to cease the kingdom of the house of Israel.

Hosea 1:5 I will break the bow of Israel

Hosea 1:6 for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel

Hosea 1:7 But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah

This sounds like a kind of cutting in half doesn't it ?

You see God will never leave us nor forsake us, but we can leave God

Judges 9:15 And the bramble said unto the trees, If in truth ye anoint me king

over you, then come and put your trust in my shadow: and if not, let fire come

out of the bramble, and devour the cedars of Lebanon.

You may say " well this is spiritual adultery "

" This does'nt apply to me "

Well is there any difference ? can you think of one of the ten commandments you have

not broken ?

You see we as Christians are married to God, we are married to Jesus Christ. we as a

Church are the " Bride of Christ " and He is the husband and God is looking for a wife who is faithful and He is preparing a place for us in His house so that when the Son...the groom comes by night to call out to His bride, the bride will be ready and prepared

Has there ever been a time when our hearts have wandered ? has there ever been a time

when we have looked in other places ? have our hearts always been for God ...

Have we looked at another with lust in our eyes ? have we worshipped other gods of house of home or husband or wife or children of money or work or false security ?

Have we lusted after things that others have or have we put anything above our husband who is Jesus ?

Then we have fallen at the first hurdle of the ten commandments

But we can also turn back and start again, we all wander off from time to time and we all get distracted from time to time and all of us have wandered away from time to time and we are all reminded that we live by grace and grace alone and if it were not for grace then none of us could stand

But what if we went completely away and continued not only to walk away but to seek others ? what if after time and time again we continue to reject our husband and our relationship ?

I wonder if God will go on for good calling to us to come back ?

I wonder if God might at some point " divorce us ? "

Some may say " Once saved always saved " well read the above and consider this


Now we turn to the second part of the message....

What if a Christian friend were to tell you that He or she were not the people you thought they were ? that in fact they had been in relationships with many and had forsaken their love ? what if you found out that indeed your friend rather than being married and faithful was wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked

That they indeed were indeed something quite different to what we imagined and that they

had lost their first love for their partner ? and had committed adultery with many others ?

What if they told you that because of their unfaithfulness their partner was going to throw them out of their home and out of their lifes ?

What if your friend is a Christian and being married to God they were unfaithful and they committed adultery with others and shared God with others and you played the " spiritual harlot " with God ?

What if God were to say to them " I'm going to spit you out of my mouth" ?

What if God were to say to them " I'm going to spit you out of my heart " ?

What if God were to say to them " I'm going to spit you out of eternity " ?

Does that sound unscriptural ? you might say " that does'nt sound like the

loving God that I know ?"

This sounds like a kind of cutting in half doesn't it ?

It sounds like some will not go on into the wedding feast, !!

The Church of laodicea

I've had this on my layed on my heart since last week and a message was given at our Church service and it was about the Church of Laodicea

The message given was quite different to these words and I am simply taking the title and transferring what God was saying to me

Do you know that name can mean "people's opinions" or "people judged". ?

Laodicea was rich, prosperous, it looked good on the outside, decent, it had all the

trappings of wealth, it may well have been seen as " blessed of God "

Respectable, well thought of, a rich banking center, a prosperous community, a community thriving

It even had two pipelines that ran to it, one pumping hot water , the other pumping cold water, the people had hot and cold running water in that place, the only problem was that by the time the hot water reached its destination it was lukewarm and by the time the cold water reached its destination it had heated up and become lukewarm

and so we read revelations, which was the scripture read out this morning

Rev 3:14 "To the angel of the church in Laodicea write:

These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation.

15 I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other!

16 So, because you are lukewarm--neither hot nor cold--I am about to spit you out

of my mouth.

17 You say, 'I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.' But

you do not realise that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.

18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.

19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.

THE MODERN DAY LAODICEANS

God see's right deep down into every heart, there is nothing that can be hidden, God can see behind the respectable lifes of people and right deep down into the innermost motives and thoughts and intentions, He can see into our lifes and hearts

He looked at the people of Laodicea and He saw past the exterior gloss and the false

walls

And He saw right into their very beings, and He saw then as naked, pitiful, poor, and

wretched, and they needed salve to put on their eyes so that they could see

God knocks at the door of the hearts of the modern day Laodiceans "people's opinions

" or "people judged"

And He tells them to repent....to repent means to change, it means to "turn around "

It means to let go of self perceived respectable opinions produced by pride,

It means that when GOD see's the heart change and is invited into the repentant heart, He will fellowship and commune.

Verse 19 If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.

God looks instead at the poor man, the beggar on the street corner, the lame man, the

prostitute, the deaf and mute, the person who's heart is right with Him, the person who comes to Him with openess and with a seeking heart

THIS is what God looks at,

And so we see a kind of divide, like a kind of separation, like a kind of divorce, like a kind of cutting in half !!

As God the Husband looks on and keeps knocking at the hearts of people...

As God the Husband looks on and keeps knocking at the door of the heart day after day..

Saying " SPEAK TO ME, TALK TO ME, WHERE IS YOUR LOVE , WHERE IS THE

RELATIONSHIP, YOU ARE MINE AND I AM YOURS AND YET YOU HAVE BEEN

UNFAITHFUL AND YOU HAVE TURNED AROUND AND HAVE NOT COME BACK

TO ME AND YOU PERSIST IN GOING AFTER OTHER LOVES "

You see God will never forsake us, or leave us, but we can leave Him

Isaiah 10:33-34 Behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with

terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn down, and the haughty shall

be humbled. And he shall cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and

Lebanon shall fall by a mighty one.

And the hot and cold supply of water to the Laodiceans was a kind of reflection

or mirror of the peoples hearts, the lukewarm water supply reflected the hearts

of the people, it was a kind of symbol

And In the same way as Hosea was a reflection of the nation of Israel and their

relationship to God , so too the lukewarm supply to the Laodicean community

was a reflection of the peoples hearts

I wonder if at some stage God might just say " Divorce " you have divorced me....

Some may say " Once saved always saved " well read the above and consider this


Now to the third part of the message

We looked into this in the last nurture group study and we looked at how David

sought after God and we noted how solomon sought after God at a time when he

needed the wisdom that God was about to give him

In other words he spoke in Gods will or saw Gods heart and sought after Gods heart

in matters of judgement to rule and to govern and this was seen as wisdom , the wisdom

of God, to know Gods heart and to see beyond mans vision

So what do you think about sawing a baby in half ?

Does'nt sound very sciptural does it ?

Sounds a bit unscriptural to me...

But we read in 1 Kings 3:16-28 about two prostitutes arguing over a baby !!

Who did the baby belong too ?

What would the King decide ?

"CUT THE BABY IN HALF" He cried...

"No cried the real mother "

And so the real mother was reunited with her baby


Now to psalms 29,30 and 31

We read in Psalm 29:5 how the Lord splits (divides) the mighty cedars

You see David wrote this Psalm when he dedicated a threshing floor

which was to become a Temple

Then we have solomons Temple..

The Cedar having been brought low and cut , is made into a temple of praise to worship and glorify God,

You see not all bad things that seem bad are bad, some bad things are actually good and some good things are bad for us

You might wonder why certain things happen to you, you might wonder why God allows these things, you might wonder if He really cares, but in the cutting down and rebuilding of your life you are being made into the person God wants you to be, testimony and witness

In the dividing not all are made into a Temple of praise as we looked earlier some choose to divorce God and so we have the dividing

Lets look at some scripture

1 Kings 5:5 And, behold, I purpose to build an house unto the name of the LORD my

God, as the LORD spake unto David my father, saying, Thy son, whom I will set

upon thy throne in thy room, he shall build an house unto my name.

1 Kings 6:9-10 So he built the house, and finished it; and covered the house

with beams and boards of cedar. And then he built chambers against all the

house, five cubits high: and they rested on the house with timber of cedar.

Ezekiel 17:22-23 Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will also take of the highest

branch of the high cedar, and will set it; I will crop off from the top of

his young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon an high mountain and

eminent:

In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it: and it shall

bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar: and under it shall

dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof shall they

dwell.

Numbers 24:6 As the valleys are they spread forth, as gardens by the river's

side, as the trees of lign aloes which the LORD hath planted, and as cedar trees

beside the waters.

Isaiah 2:13 And upon all the cedars of Lebanon, that are high and lifted up,

and upon all the oaks of Bashan,

Isaiah 10:33-34 Behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with

terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn down, and the haughty shall

be humbled. And he shall cut down the thickets of the forest with iron, and

Lebanon shall fall by a mighty one.

Numbers 24:6 As the valleys are they spread forth, as gardens by the river's

side, as the trees of lign aloes which the LORD hath planted, and as cedar trees

beside the waters.

Now lets finish by looking at Psalm 31:5-6

And we finish with these words

5 Into your hands I commit my spirit; redeem me, O LORD, the God of truth.

6 I hate those who cling to worthless idols; I trust in the LORD

Where in Gods word do you see these words repeated ?

Into your hands I commit my spirit......

Luke 23:46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into your hands I commit my

spirit." When he had said this, he breathed his last.

And Acts 7:59 59And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord

Jesus, receive my spirit.

You see we need complete trust in Father God to enable Him !!

We do not rely on human resources and gods of the heart, but we rely and completely

put our trust in God, utter dependence, that takes trust, to be cut down and used as

a Temple to worship Him

We have two divides, a split, depend and trust in Him in your marriage or divorce Him

Lets pray

Lord God your voice echoes above the seas of people, your voice can be heard in the

thunders and your glory in the lightning bolts, you split and you divide the thoughts and motives of the heart.

No one can hide from you neither run from you or escape you, though they hide in the

mountains and in the caves, you are there and know their comings and their goings, when

they rise and when they sit, you know their thoughts from afar, and even before the

thought enters their mind

You run to the one who runs to you and you chase after the ones who run from you, you know all things and no one can hide from your glory and from your light and your light reveals all that might hide in the darkness

Not a visible light like the sun , but a light that exposes and is Holy, a light that

infiltrates everything and brings anything and everything to the surface

Lord let us choose to be the trees by the waters that are Temples of praise and are

found to be ready and not ones who have gone and are left outside

Lord we entrust our lifes to you now

Our Husband we trust in you

In Jesus name amen

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