05 August 2008

Remembering Amalek – 5.13.08

God gave the following charge to the Hebrew nation in Deuteronomy 25:17-19…

Remember what Amalek did unto thee by the way, when ye were come forth out of Egypt; How he met thee by the way, and smote the hindmost of thee, even all that were feeble behind thee, when thou wast faint and weary; and he feared not God. Therefore it shall be, when the Lord thy God hath given thee rest from all thine enemies round about, in the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance to possess it, that thou shalt blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven; thou shalt not forget it.

When I read the above passage, my mind went immediately to 1 Samuel 15:1-3…

Samuel also said unto Saul, The Lord sent me to anoint thee to be king over his people, over Israel: now therefore hearken thou unto the voice of the words of the Lord. Thus saith the Lord of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt. Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

The date given for Deuteronomy 25 is 1451 BC. The date given for 1 Samuel 15 is 1087 BC. So the repetition of this mandate follows over 350 years after the original commandment given in Deuteronomy 25. In 1 Samuel, Israel is almost 400 into the covenant they made with God, and they still haven't carried out what God told them to do at the outset (nor did Saul complete the task).

A simple thought arises from this observation. What did God convict us about a long time ago that we still haven't yielded to Him? What commandment did the Lord bring to our attention so long ago we can't even remember…and yet we still haven't obeyed? What thing did the Holy Ghost once lay upon our heart to do that we still haven't carried out?

The Lord apparently remembers those things, and He seems to bring them to our minds from time to time (like today, hopefully).

Now, will we be like Israel and continue to miss out on God's blessings due to our incomplete obedience? Or will we do what's right and seize the day and redeem the time and complete the task that God has given us?

…Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry…

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