Title: Where are the calls for repentance?
Plot: This message questions our response to the Coronavirus
Notes: Why are we leaning on vaccines and science to solve our problems?
Listen to "Where are the calls for repentance? (Coronavirus)" on Spreaker.
Hey, Welcome back!
I heard a story about a man having a conversation with God. He said, "God, what is a million years like to you?" And God said, "It's like a second to you." And the man said, "God, what is a million dollars like to you?" And God said, "It's like a penny to you." And the man thought long and hard and then he said, "God, could I have a penny?" And God said, "Sure, just give me a second."
I haven't heard many preachers issue a call for repentance in the midst of this Coronavirus situation. I'm not hurling an accusation, it just seemed like there was a gap here and since I noticed it, I assumed God is making the suggestion that I fill it. In my case, I didn't need to hear that call. I instinctively made life changes because I thought it couldn't be more obvious that a dark time is an opportunity to reflect on my spiritual state and fix it.
And so yes, I believe we were saved by grace through faith, but I look to history as a guide and when I read stories like Of Plymouth Plantation and the Light and the Glory I noticed that the first impulse of every puritan, saved born-again, whatever label you like, Christian... their first impulse during a disaster was to repent and ask God for his forgiveness and mercy. Even though they were already his people. Sometimes they fasted and declared a day of Thanksgiving or fasting. But every time God would respond. He would resolve whatever problem they faced in record time. It didn't matter what it was.
Your citizens are being bit by poisonous snakes? Okay, make an image of a golden snake, put it on a staff and tell them that once bit, they need only look at the image and they will be healed. You're having a famine? Okay, well that's because Saul attacked Gibeon after Israel had made a peace treaty with them. So ask them what they view as fair and when you deliver it, the famine will end. And so it did.
But that doesn't seem to be our reaction now with this Coronavirus situation. Instead of calling out to God and repenting and asking for him deliverance from our problems. I hear people hoping a vaccine will be manufactured, some people want it to be mandatory. Everyone must take it! And that disturbs me, because that puts an awful lot of inappropriate faith in man and science. We should remember that compared to God, science is barbaric and foolish! I've heard a vaccine will take longer than a year, and vaccines have been known to kill those who took them. And so here we are in a situation with the Coronavirus where random chance might keep you safe and you may never come in contact with the virus. But some people are calling for a vaccine to be made mandatory that is as likely to kill as many or more people than the disease does. Meaning that some people are willing to roll the dice and wait a year, and then roll the dice again and hope they aren't going to die from the mandatory injection that they wish upon themselves, rather than spend a week or a month, praying fasting, and cleaning up their sinful lives — and making changes that will have far greater impact. Not only on their physical well-being, but on their eternal destiny. I find that shocking! Meaning some are attempting to circumvent God with science. Instead of asking for mercy, they're looking for loopholes. How many times do we read stories where the people became sinful, God visited them with some kind of plague, they repented and God healed their land? The answer is every single time people did this, God forgave them and healed their land. And every time they persisted in their sins, undeterred by God's corrective actions, it led to a judgement event.
Make no mistake our reliance on science to solve God-sized problems has the danger of allowing sinners to remain in their sins and even double down on them when they should be reforming and turning to God and potentially saving their very souls. It would seem that some people are so afraid of death and so determined to keep on sinning that they would rather wait a year rolling the dice twice, facing the specter of death twice, and all so that there is a chance they can emerge on the other side feeling protected by a manmade shot that in their mind enables them to continue sinning. But if this is a judgement event from God, and they remain in their sins, and even if a vaccine is developed that actually works, then God will send another plague. Because the point, the problem isn't the virus, science and random chance. The problem is sin, disobedience, and pride.
I hear people saying things like this too shall pass. Trust in the Lord, they talk about God's healing power, and his desire to bless us in difficult times and I agree with those sentiments, but I'm not hearing them say, "Hey, listen, this nation has quite obviously become dark. There's a dark Coronavirus cloud lurking. The church is the light, maybe the light isn't doing its job. Hence the dark cloud. Maybe we deserve this. Have we become tolerant of sins that God doesn't tolerate? And now as a result people don't trust each other, they don't even stand near each other. We are experiencing national isolationism on the individual level, and so maybe we should take a second and reflect. What do ya think? Is it coincidence that an event has happened that would naturally trigger a massive decline in promiscuous premarital sex? Am I doing something I should fix? Am I making compromises in my life that God disapproves of? When people say things that conflict with the word of God am I agreeing or am I remaining silent? Could that be the problem? Is it because after we banned prayer in schools, school shootings emerged threatening children, and so God found a way to protect the kids by sending everyone home? I would imagine that they can pray in their homes, and if they have any sense at a time like this, they are.
Did God introduce a consequence to our sins that would have the natural effect of curtailing promiscuous sex, forcing families to act like families, causing everyone to pray more, reflect more, and pause and consider that maybe we aren't pleasing God.
Maybe this is an opportunity... Did I need the willpower to overcome an addiction? Is this an opportunity to unite my desire to quit doing something with my fear and my concerns about God's judgement for doing it? Have I been wishing and wanting that something would tip willpower in my favor so I could finally dispatch some negative behavior that I knew was unpleasing to God? And so why not use our fear of Coronavirus to trigger our willpower and dispatch longstanding sins we should have confronted years ago?
I know I've made some changes in my life. I looked around in my house for accursed objects and I burned everything that I feared God may disapprove of. And I sensed immediate relief from burdens that I didn't realize I was carrying. And another interesting thing happened. I noticed that when burning certain objects some of them sort of refused to burn until I commanded them to in the name of Jesus Christ. And then during and after burning, a sort of tempest formed around my house. As if I had made spirits angry and they were trying to stop me from continuing by intimidating me with a localized weather event, one specific to me and my house. But I continued anyway because that which makes evil spirits angry pleases God. And so circle me, as they did, they couldn't touch me particularly because I was engaged in an act of obedience that pleased God. The Bible tells us to root out and then burn or smash accursed objects. History records revivals where believers burned hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of bad books. Meaning that not all book burnings are bad because it depends on what books you're burning. Some are necessary.
I understand this may sound surprising, but try it. Put my comments to the test. Pick one thing you are virtually certain God would disapprove of and if it can't be burned, then smash it to bits. Pray before you do this that God will make you sensitive to the things of the spirit, and listen to his promptings while you do it, and watch and see if the things that I described happen for you, too.
Certainly there is at least one object you know God might disapprove of that you can part with. One you can destroy as a test. Pay attention to your stomach when you do this, does it sort of implode a little? Be sensitive to it. God talks about the cup of iniquity being full. Your stomach is your cup. If your stomach is full and you notice that after destroying something accursed it causes your stomach to shrink back, then keep going, keep burning and smashing. Until your stomach is empty. You will sense total relief and you will actually lose weight, your physical condition will improve, you will literally be lighter because the spirit of heaviness will leave you; because your cup of iniquity will be empty. Your stomach is a spiritual barometer that you can learn to use to your good. Which is why fasting is so important. It makes you hypersensitive to your stomach. You notice things that lead to revelations like the one I'm describing right now.
You may recall the story about Hansel and Gretel, but what you probably didn't know is that it carries a hidden message. You will recall that witches' house was covered with sugary candy. And the witch caged the children and fed them the candy to fatten them up. The Bible refers to sweetness as a symbol for sin. For this reason, there were certain sacrifices that must be made without leaven and honey. Leaven is a Bible symbol for pride, and honey is the Bible symbol for sin. That's not to say honey and leaven are evil in and of themselves and that we shouldn't eat them. But rather that the Bible makes use of them as symbols that represent bad things. I did a podcast on the crucifixion that explained the symbolic nature of rocks, water and the holy of holies. If you're skeptical or even if you're not, I suggest you listen to that podcast, it's called: How Bible Symbolism makes the story of the crucifixion even better.
The Bible talks about people becoming puffed up. Another word for that is fat. And so consider the symbolism in the story about Hansel and Gretel. The witch cages them, meaning she coerces or corals them into making only one specific choice regularly which was to partake in the sins that she was enabling and even requiring of them. And if they do, it is only matter of time before their cup of iniquity is full, before the spirit of heaviness rests on them, before they become puffed up fat and ripe for destruction. If you have someone in your life who is not only enabling sin, but who is practically begging you to do it, they could be a witch. And their ultimate goal is to devour you. I know this might sound startling. But be very careful to disobey the desires of a person who is trying lead you into sin. Particularly if they are in the position to be the most angry about you actually committing that sin. Meaning that they are inexplicably leading you into doing something that they should object to and even hate. That is a near sure sign that this person is no fool, they are setting a trap and fattening you up for destruction. In fact, if you may have wondered, is this a trap? Because committing this sin should hurt them. And if you allowed their disarming smile and their encouraging nature to nudge you forward one step after another, then it's time to repent and run the other direction. Empty your cup of iniquity particularly if you are physically bloating and experiencing bouts with extreme gas. Listen to me now and believe me later. And test me by destroying or burning something that that individual gave you and see if you don't notice immediate relief particularly if you keep destroying their gifts.
Solomon once said, "There's nothing new under the sun." And so I'll list some podcasts and books in the full transcript of this message on my website, that you will find both helpful and enlightening. For example, In William Bradford's book called Of Plymouth Plantation, whenever anything bad happened the puritans would immediately search for sins in their own lives, confess them, repent and God would invariably improve their situation. These were not unbelievers getting saved, these were believers repenting for their sins. And the remedy would come quickly and often miraculously. Whether the hardship came because of his judgement or whether he simply saw their humble hearts and decided to help because they turned to him, it doesn't matter. In the end God is the one remedy that cures all ailments. Turning to God solves all life's problems. All of them. And the insistence to wait for a vaccine is a manifestation of pride we don't need God to solve our problems, we will do it ourselves. Sometimes even good well meaning Christians have sin in their lives that have needled them for years that they tolerated. And the sum total of these things adds up becomes unbearable. And so God does you a favor when he forces you to clean house. You can dump all of your baggage in one fail swoop. You can dispatch the spirit of heaviness, you can deflate your puffed up state, and the change in your appearance will be immediate and noticeable. People will comment that you lost weight and ask what your secret is. Tell them. Because the message needs to circulate that whether we are saved and have received Jesus or not, it's still important to walk in obedience. After we receive him, God will eventually conform us to his standard. Don't fight the process. Use his correcting events as motivation to dispatch your sin and never take it up again. And always remember what happened when you allowed your cup of iniquity to fill and how he emptied it.
Though I have always been a big believer in God's grace and mercy. I have also been on the receiving end of his correcting events. In one case I understood exactly why he would be bothered. I was living in a backslide taking advantage of the freedom I had in Christ. And in the other situation, I was the target of a witch, and though I had done little that I viewed as wrong. This nefarious soul was practically filling my cup of iniquity for me. And so my mistake was that I wasn't resisting. Like Hansel, I should have refused to eat the candy, but instead because it was offered to me freely and because I was encouraged and coaxed to take, to eat and enjoy, I didn't see the problem. But God saw the problem and he intervened requiring me to act on faith and destroy the objects in my house that she gave me and refuse to consume her food offerings and in fact to drive her away.
I had no idea how important it was even as I was doing it, but afterwards it became abundantly clear that I was in mortal danger. There are two or even three ways you learn about the occult and witchcraft in life: one is through television in movies, another is being on the receiving end of the attacks, and of course the third way is to look into it. Being in the camp of somebody who has been on the receiving end of such attacks. I have learned far more than I would like to know about the behavior of the powers of darkness.
So in both cases my life was in danger, and obedience was necessary, repentance was necessary. In the first case it was my sin and it was obvious to me and even I acknowledged I deserved God's corrective actions. In the second case, it was much less obvious. It didn't seem like what I was doing was bad because I had the support and encouragement from everyone involved. But not everyone who smiles at you is your friend.
And so while I recognize revelations aren't always fun and entertaining they are still revelatory. The Bible says, God's people are destroyed for lack of understanding. It warns that there are some people who can't keep themselves alive. Meaning their lives were cut short because they failed to learn God's ways, to read God's word, to listen to him, and do what he said.
My name is Tom the Revelator. I don't give myself this name because it's who I am. I give myself this name because it's who I want to be. Jacob became Israel through a process.
It is my goal to give you at least one encouragement, one revelation, one area where you can grow, and at least one humorous comment in every podcast.
And so the time has come to encourage you. You're here, you listened to this entire message, and this one was hard. That means you have fortitude you have strength and you are able to deliver yourself from the fowler's snare recognizing that sometimes that process hurts. Sometimes it costs us something, but it always sets us free. And there is nothing quite like freedom.
In the immortal words of Jesus Christ. Please come, follow me. And by that I mean find that follow or subscribe button and click on it.
That's all folks! Y'all come back now! Ya hear?
Podcasts mentioned on this episode
Listen to "How Bible Symbolism makes the story of the Crucifixion even better! [14 mins]" on Spreaker.
Listen to "Of Plymouth Plantation by William Bradford [15 Mins]" on Spreaker.
Listen to "The Light and the Glory - Part 1 [16 Mins]" on Spreaker.
Listen to "The Light and the Glory - Part 2 [27 Mins]" on Spreaker.