Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Aaron's sons Nadab and Abihu took their censers, put fire in them and added incense; and they offered unauthorized fire before the LORD, contrary to his command. So fire came out from the presence of the LORD and consumed them, and they died before the LORD. Moses then said to Aaron, "This is what the LORD spoke of when he said: " 'Among those who approach me I will show myself holy; in the sight of all the people I will be honored.' " Aaron remained silent. (Leviticus 10:1-3 NIV)
Why Oh Why do we insist on learning things the hard way? How many times does God have to tell us not to touch something for us to learn not to touch it? Do we need to get burned? How many times will we test the grace of God before He allows us to suffer the consequences of our own disobedience?
Why are we not always as careful as we should be with the anointing that God has endowed us with? Why do we think we can step in and out of the assignments God has for our lives and complete them in our own way in our own time? Furthermore, when God begins to correct our disobedience why do we question our punishment? Why do we tend to blame every unpleasant thing that happens to us on the enemy and often neglect to consider some hardships to be discipline that the Lord promised to those He considers as His children? Selah.
In the previous chapter (Leviticus 9) the priests had just been annointed for office and begun their work in the Lord's ministry, yet here we see in Leviticus 10 that one fatal mistake caused them to be consumed by the anger of the Lord. Both their lives and ministry were over in an instant. Why? They were appointed by God to the Levitical Priesthood, why would they die for performing the duties of the priesthood? It wasn't "what" they were doing but it was "how" they were doing it. God is a God of order. The proper procedure was for the priests to use the fire from the altar. Also, the ceremony was to be performed by one priest at a time. Nadab and Abihu waited until the rest of the congregation were in worship to perform their unauthorized ceremony. God sees all and He knows all. Our prayer partners and fellow labourers in the Lord may not know when we are out of the will of God operating as if "everything is everything" but God knows. I wonder if the brothers purposely waited until Moses, Aaron and the rest of the congregation weren't around to break the rules. I wonder they didn't think it counted if they weren't walking worthy of their priestly calling if there wasn't anyone around to witness the offence.
The bible tells us that a novice or an inexperienced person shouldn't be placed in office lest they fall into temptation and condemnation (1 Timothy 3:6) Pride is a "dangerous sin". All sins are dangerous but pride is one of those sins that can be hidden and masked for quite some time before it is evident to others. However, we know that pride comes before destruction (Proverbs 16:18). Pride has a way of contaminating your mind to lead you to beleive that you are greater than you are. The flesh begins to increase as the Spirit of God decreases because the Spirit of God cannot dwell in an unclean temple (1 Corinthians 3:16-17). This is contrary to what has to happen so that God can be glorified in our ministry (see John 3:30). Nadab and Abihu would have been the 3rd and 4Th in line with Moses and Aaron being the most influential men amongst the congregation. Perhaps they allowed their new found title/position/assignment/auxiliary go to their heads. Perhaps they forgot that it is God that appointed them to their office to serve him. We must be ever so careful not to allow our success and accolades of men to drive our ministry but rather (as Jesus said) our meat should be to do the will of He that sent us.
After Moses explained to Aaron that his sons were already forewarned of the consequences of mishandling their anointing, he remained silent. Many times we see our loved ones suffering because of choices they intentionally made to go against the will of God. As humans, we are proned to error. Sometimes we err on the side of being angry at the system/mates/circumstances/ourselves and even God for allowing our loved ones (and even ourselves) to suffer. We can't always understand how a loving, long-suffering, compassionate forgiving good God would allow bad things to happen to what we consider to be "good people" but He does. Some trials are only to make us stronger but there are others that are a direct result of us disobeying God.
Therefore, let us pray:
Dear Lord in the name of Jesus, We come to you in a repentant spirit. We ask that you forgive us for all the sins we committed both by commission and omission. We thank you for your grace and your mercy. We realize that we too deserve the same fate that the sons of Aaron received every time we take for granted the assignments you have given us. I pray that we will all examine ourselves, our actions and our motives more carefully. Let us do all that we do in word and in deed to your glory. We want to be vessels ready to be used by you. Purify us, sanctify us wholly to be used by you . We thank you for choosing us. We thank you for allowing us to be part of your Royal Priesthood and most of all for coming down to earth as the perfect High Priest and sacrificing yourself for us.
We thank you for your word and how applicable it still is today even though you wrote it so long ago. Now I ask that you bless every person that visits this blog, those that visit their blogs and those that visit their blogs. Fill them with your spirit, Lord. Comfort the wounded, heal the sick, deliver the bound and most of all Lord - save the unsaved. I pray this pray with the expectation that you are able to perform above and beyond all I asked if it be your will with much thanksgiving in Jesus' name. Amen.
Posted by Shanita Waters at 5:20 PM