“Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.” - Hosea 6:3 (KJV)
Over the last two weeks, we have discussed how God, as our benevolent Father, uses chastening as a tool to foster a renewed relationship with His people. Rather than despising the chastening of the Lord, we should endeavor to embrace it. In this week’s blog, I invite you to consider a couple of more elements that are essential in returning and renewing a relationship with our God.
1. We must trust and walk in the knowledge of God rather than our own understanding.
We must pursue the knowledge of the Lordbecause when we position ourselves in knowledge that is independent of our infinite God, it is seriously problematic. For example, God's people were punished with ruin as result of their self-reliance. In Hosea 4:6, God declares that His people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.
Body of Christ, when we purpose to pursue the knowledge of the Lord, He promises to pour out blessings! However, our effort must be more than superficial. It must be an intentional and invested effort. According to the Scriptures, sacrifice is necessary to receive the rich reward of God's knowledge.
“My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee; so that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; if thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.” - Proverbs 2:1-5 (KJV)
Are you willing to invest this type of commitment in the pursuit of the knowledge of the Lord? If so, the rewards are great!
2. Trusting in your own heart will train you to miss God’s heart consistently.
The most unreliable and deceitful reference for knowledge is the human heart and a mind that is void and independent of God's Spirit. A fleshly heart and mind will cause you to consistently miss out on God’s purposes and will for your life. You are consistently not on the same page with God because you are consistently trusting in your own heart! As a result, you supplant His authority and purposes in your life and advance your selfish agendas.
Challenge: I encourage you to ask yourself: does your conduct indicate that you are in sync with the Spirit of God in regards to challenges, career choice, company you keep, and especially when you are caught in a crisis? In respect to your place of worship, is it your sense of loyalty to a tradition (which by the way nullifies the authority of the Scriptures) or is it the Spirit and knowledge of God that is encouraging you to stay?
How God's People Missed God's Heart
“For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.” - Hosea 6:6 (KJV, emphasis added)
In reviewing the Scriptures, we see that the Israelites were also guilty of missing out on God’s heart. The Bible indicates that their worship was wanting because they were on the wrong page with God in respect to the type of worship that He wanted. At this time, God's people were still good at bringing sacrifice (Hosea 5:6) but they had forsaken mercy because they gave up the knowledge of God and truth (Hosea 4:1). God would rather have right hearts, full of truth and mercy than sacrifice.
Having the wrong heart impacts all aspects of our lives including worship, intimacy with God, ministry, and relationships. When we trust our own hearts, we will find our lives are going in a direction that is not on the same course with our Creator and faithful Father. Whenever you trust a heart full of lies, it will prevent the plans that God has for you. You cannot love or trust two masters! You must choose either God’s heart or your own heart!
I encourage you to perform a personal evaluation: Are you perplexed with your current path and position in life? If so, then revoke the rationalization of your rebellious heart. Repent and reunite yourself with the heart of God!
Not a Sermon But a Thought,