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Erosion of a Love Relationship (2 of 2)
Telephone game - each person of the line loses a bit more of the story.
Erosion of a message or of a relationship can be subtle, slow and go unnoticed until at the end you wake up and realize how far you have missed out.
How did I ever get here?
Open to HOSEA Major lessons in the Minor Prophets
People of Israel had so assimilated the superstitions and practices of the false religions that they attributed praise and thanks from the true God to Baal. They saw their God as a Super-Spirit or a super-baal.
READ Hosea 4:1-3 as overview of the situation
Outward diseases: vs . 2
Inward infections: vs. 1a No faithfulness, loyalty, KNOWLDGE of G.
Knowledge: Constant vigil and awareness of the covenant
A DILIGIENCE to care about the relationship
There had been a covenant of love established between God and Israel.
LET'S DISCREN THE EROSION OF THIS LOVE - OR
COVENANT - RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN GOD AND HIS
PEOPLE Between God and Israel; Church and Cx.
1. COMPROMISE OF THE SPIRITUAL LEADERS
Read Hosea 4:7-9
The system in place: based on Num 18
Priests had a right to the leftover meat and sacrifices at altar
The eroding element: Priests found a way to prosper the more the people sinned
vs. 8 They feed on the sins of my people and relish their wickedness.
MORE SIN==MORE MEAT AND LEFTOVERS TO HAVE/SELL
Personal profit and indulging our desires is deceptive
seductive...even for spiritual leaders.
The practical result: Personal profit - was more the interest - than service to God. Instead of motivating the people to pursue the true nature of pure devotion to God, they personally prospered the more the people stumbled and sinned.
The people were obliged to 'pay-up' through the sacrificial system.
The priests had a vested interest in the continuing sin of the people.
vs. 9 Like people; like priest
The priesthood and the people were equally eroded.
The priest conformed his life to the people's values and compromises and the people found it easy to follow and respond because the standards were lowered so any could reach it.
A slippery subtle EROSION from the days of integrity; discipline; truth
How did the priesthood get to this point?
1 Kings 12:27 - 31
Priesthood had been reserved only for the Levites.
Worship patterns were established through the Law of God.
But Jeroboam had become King of the Northern 10 tribes
Out of fear, he eroded the ways to approach God in worship and the requirements for the priesthood.
vs. 27 Notice his fears
vs. 28 He pursued convenience instead of devotion
Deut. 12:13 says: Be careful NOT to offer your burnt offerings in every place you see, but only in the place your Lord chooses...
He established alternatives to God's requirements
He also pointed people's attention to false gods
vs. 30 He pleased people by elevating them to leadership
Notice 13:33: Jereboam did ...
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