Vol. 8-02 – 01-08-2023 – Overlooked Blogs– Two and Three?
Two Questions to Stop our Complacency
But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, “where are you?” –Genesis 3:9
The Bible is full of questions. The question in the first verse is quite significant. It implies two questions. Of course, you have read the account giving the reason why Adam and Eve were hiding from God. They had disobeyed God—both Adam and Eve.
What was behind this? Satan lured Eve with a lie. Then, Adam, who was standing in the bushes did nothing to protect God’s gift to him, Eve. Weren’t there vows, or something? How could Adam neglect his wife?
Here are the first humans created by God. There was a small, but big, instruction. Do not eat the fruit from a specific tree. Oh, God did not really mean that (says the liar). Thus, the relationship with God was broken by their choice. Satan did not MAKE them do wrong; they chose to do wrong. But just as today, they played victims.
Did God wash His hands of them? He could have rightly done so, but He did not. Further, He comes walking in the garden, to visit with said wrongdoers. His question: Where are you? It is addressed to the man, Adam. Guy’s think that the question should be addressed to the one making this mess—Eve.
Does not God ask us the same question? Where are you in relation to Me? Do we attempt to cover our wrongdoings? Why have your rejected My love? Why do we hide from God? Or think that He does not notice? All He asks from us is obedience; to do what He expects.
I noticed in the New Testament that the first question is: Where is He? (Matthew 2:2). A question from the wise men to Herod.
The wise men expected an answer. What was the problem? Where Herod was in relationship with God. Herod’s relationship with God was not Herod’s question. He was unconcerned regarding that question. In fact, the bigger question for Herod was what God’s relationship with him was.
So, where is He? That is the question (the second question) God is asking that is bound in the question of Genesis 3:9, made plainer in Luke 19:10: For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.
God sent His Son into the world for a specific purpose. He asks a specific question: Where are you? It is an important question, for His Son, Jesus, the Christ, gave His life for the whole world so that the whole world might come out of hiding and become His own. He is near, not far. He chases the unredeemed with His love, grace, and mercy. He wants to have a legitimate relationship with every person created. Sadly, so many are still hiding.
Too Busy for all Three Times
Three times in the year shall all your males appear before the Lord God, the God of Israel. For I will cast out nations before you and enlarge your borders; no one shall covet your land, when you go up to appear before the Lord your God three times in the year. –Exodus 34:23-24
How are you doing with the pushy times of your day? Do you keep a list? One of those with the little boxes next to the “To Do?” Check it off. Go to the next box. Have you ever stayed up at night to get some things done because you ran out of time when it was light outside?
Busy. One more thing grabs us.
Are you ever too busy to spend time with the Lord? Do you easily skip a worship service or Bible study? To visit relatives, play golf, other sporting events, go fishing, to cabbage onto that extra pay for overtime . . . shop?
How early in the Scriptures has God reminded us of His expectations for worship? How far back did the Israelites struggle with their worship or teaching their children from the Word? What is the intent of God’s Word in Exodus 34:23-24?
Did you notice that odd phrase in the verses: no one shall covet your land? In other words, you are not going to suffer because you choose to worship God as He expects. Yet, it is a proper assumption to understand there is an outcome that is negative should we choose to entertain ourselves or enriching ourselves in worldly affairs at the expense of worship?
In our area, we have a nursery business called Pike’s Nurseries. They have a saying: Playing in the dirt for 50 years. I could not help but think of the grandparents visiting with their grandchildren on Sunday, playing in the dirt with them, never considering taking them to church in the morning for Bible study and worship. What are they taught? And then the children turn away from God in their teen years—it was not important to their parents or grandparents; why should it be important to them?
The passage in Exodus is about priorities. It is also about the deception of the world. Lies, just like in Genesis 3:9
Lies tell us that we do not have time to worship. Young people often do not worship because it is not important to others in their families.
God’s Word is always true, dependable, and related to our daily lives. Never should we doubt the expectations of God are just communication. His Words affect our lives, and the lives of those around us.
Just a note for those of you who often are called upon to work on the Lord’s Day. Stop and consider what other day you can worship. It will build important values for yourself and for those who are important to you.
God knows exactly what we need. It can be in two questions or in three expectations.