Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Omnishambles (05/01/14)
TITLE: The Man who fled from the Lion
By Shanta Richard
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How does one deal with this kind of cascading disasters? The Preacher has said that there is nothing new under the sun and what has happened to someone before will happen again. Hence the answer should be in the Bible, and I decided to find it.
The first person who came to my mind was Pharaoh of Egypt. One after another God sent ten plagues that left his kingdom in different stages of shambles. Yet he was arrogant, stubborn and ‘stiff-necked’ and refused to let the children of Israel go. He found his end at the bottom of the Red Sea. That is exactly what would happen to me if I dare to refuse to learn from God’s punishments.
The second one was King David. This time it was not disasters but a series of temptations. When he should have been on the battlefield, he opted to stay home. Maybe he had a sumptuous lunch and a good nap. He was on the balcony enjoying the fresh evening breeze. I don’t think he really meant to see Bathsheba, but his wandering gaze fell on her. Anyway why was Bathsheba on the terrace when she knew she would be in full view of anyone standing on the King’s private balcony? Maybe she expected the king to be away on the battlefield.
But that is not the issue. The point is that wandering gaze triggered a series of temptations that the devil skillfully used to lead David into the deep pit of sin. David was so blind that he did not realize the magnitude of his sin until God sent the prophet Nathan to point his finger at him and say, ‘Thou art the man.’
David confessed his sin to God and with a broken and contrite heart pleaded for forgiveness. His prayer for forgiveness in Psalm 51 is a source of inspiration and hope to sinners even today. God heard his prayer and forgiving him restored him to the status of His friend. That is the lesson for me – to respect God’s correction and repent for He is gracious and loving, and will forgive me.
The last one is Job, the man of pain and suffering. One by one he lost all his wealth – his cattle, his sheep, his camels and finally all his children. Job did not question God. He said, ‘The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.’ (Job 1:21) But that was not all. Job lost his health and his body was covered with painful sores. He had no moral support since his friends and even his wife were of no help or comfort. Jobs response to this torment was, ‘Though He slays me I will trust Him.’(Job1:21)
God was making a statement to Satan and was using Job as a model. Job came out with shining colors. God ‘blessed the later end of Job more than his beginning.’(Job 42:12)
Now I have three choices. I could rebel against God’s punishments like Pharaoh, confess my sin and ask for forgiveness like David or be thankful and honored that God has chosen me to be His example. As a Christian I always have choices. Finally it will be my decision.
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