Genesis 12:1-4 The Lord had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. “I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” So Abram went, as the Lord had told him
Deuteronomy 7:6 “You are a people holy to the Lord your God. The Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession.”
Joshua 7 (it’s a long chapter, but explains why the Israelites lost a battle as one of their own stole things from the town. God knew and dealt with it in front of all the Israelites.)
Acts 17:25-28 He gives everyone life and breath and everything else. From one man He made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us.
1 Kings 3:8 Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number.
Psalm 105:43 He brought out his people with rejoicing, his chosen ones with shouts of joy; he gave them the lands of the nations, and they fell heir to what others had toiled for—that they might keep his precepts and observe his laws.
Over the years, I have had several people accusingly ask me why God could kill so many people in the Old Testament, and often I didn’t have an answer either. It kind of bothered me that we were calling God good, kind, and loving and He had totally annihilated peoples. Frustrated at not knowing, I wondered how much I understood about the bible reading and God and who He truly is and was, and wondered if maybe I was so flawed that I would never get it. I found it pretty upsetting.
But I continued to read; and in all honesty there was much about the Old Testament I didn’t like or want to read—Leviticus, Job, Deuteronomy—and all the good and bad and difficult names. Who except God could keep them straight? I persevered, attended bible studies, listened to various preachers on television and certainly attended services regularly. I hung out with other Christians and read a lot of bible teaching books and so forth. And each time, I gained more understanding, a deeper appreciation, and a lot of my questions have been answered by the Holy Spirit and my self-education, although often a question I have, is answered that week in a bible study or a sermon! God is so good, and I am frequently amazed how my concerns and questions can be answered when they are.
So back to my original concern about how a loving, kind and generous God could wipe out peoples. He designed man/woman to live with Him. They however, decided they wanted to be equal to Him, and chose to sin to gain the knowledge that would make them equal to God. So the same arrogance and pride that resulted in Satan being thrown out of heaven, the serpent Satan, used to tempt and encourage Eve to first sin, then pull Adam into her mistake. And the resultant sin separated them from God.
Good and bad; thus resulted with some people choosing to be obedient and many other people choosing to be prideful and live separate from God, worshipping idols (blatantly disobeying the first and most important commandment). God would have to step in, and using His chosen people, He conquered the lands, killing many, and at times enslaving others.
The Israelites had done nothing special to be CHOSEN by God—they had good, and not so good, obedient and not, but God chose them to be His first children. He gave them laws, taught what was acceptable and what was not, and He knew when there was disobedience and took care of it promptly. Death is the result of sin. And Achan and his family, all his animals, the things he stole—gold bar, silver, and a Babylonian robe were all taken outside the Israelite camp and were they stoned and killed, then burned and stones covered the area where they all died. This was to stress to God’s chosen that sin is not tolerable and would immediately be punished–and not just the sinner but all the family–everything belonging to them was to be considered tainted.
Nothing is hidden from God. Many in my life feel they do not have to commit to God, they don’t understand having a RELATIONSHIP with HIM, and will justly say, “I’m a good person. I do….or I don’t do…I try to do mostly right…” They hold dearly onto their hearts and ways and do not let God take them in and love and care for them, and most importantly they do NOT believe they are sinners. Yet every one of us sins, and thankfully, for those of us who know Jesus, we confess our sins daily and are forgiven and ask the Holy Spirit to help us do better each day.
They shrug when I say no one is good and pure except Jesus and it was He alone who could and did free us from our sins, and will ensure we can approach God. Our ‘good’ is not God’s standard of ‘good.’ And believing that justifies you, is false. Accepting Jesus, acknowledging Him as Savior is the only way. I still sin—daily. I am not, never will be perfect. It is not about being perfect. It is about knowing He willingly gave His love so we could live in eternity with Him. That is freeing.
I am not big into violent movies which I am sure was a big part of not understanding how God could kill so many, seemingly uncaring. But He is the creator of all. He breathed the world and all into existence. He is the only one God—there should never be another god before you. He is God. He knows and sees all. He designed all in the world, knew you and me and each of us before we were born. He is worthy to be praised and heralded as the only God because He is the Creator, omniscient, omnipresent, without sin, and full of love and kindness.
Because He was with the Israelites, He showed them repeatedly that if they were obedient, He was with them. But if they chose disobedience, then He could destroy them—as He did with those in the countries invaded and conquered by the Israelites. Those worshiped idols they made from metals or wood, and repeatedly sinned in many ways. That is why there is so much violence in the OT. God CHOSE Israel for no special reason, other than those were who He chose, and He started a nation through one man, Abraham. He recognized that Abraham was obedient and loved Him in His heart, and from him, He would produce an entire nation. And He instructed them, guided, and lead them, loved them, help them prosper, supplied them with food and water during the many years they spent in the desert.
He asked for obedience and that they honor and worship ONLY HIM. He created all we see, all we are and have, and He is certainly worthy of our honor, thankfulness, praise and recognizing His glory.
He showed repeatedly He did not want or would not tolerate forever sinfulness. Sin leads to death and compete separation from Him and eternal life in hell. I do NOT want to spend my eternity in hell. So although I sin and will never be perfect, I want a closer relationship with Him, and I will continue to repent of my sins, ask the Holy Spirit to guide my steps, give praise and thank Him for all He has done for me.
Father, You have been abundantly generous to me. I am so thankful for me and ‘mybellaviews.’