A Forgotten God

The seasonal change in the weather reminds me of the seasons of life we regularly experience—seasons of joy, seasons of sorrow, seasons of pain, seasons of growth, etc. There are mountain tops and there are valleys. There is warmth and there is cold. There are vibrant colors and there are muted colors. For the children of Israel, the seasonal change is rather stark. Following Joshua’s conquest of the Promised Land, Israel entered a period of time where they experienced a rocky relationship with Yahweh. Judges 2 provides the reason for this difficult season—“There arose another generation that did not know the Lord, nor the work which He had done for Israel” (2:10). God’s chosen people had forgotten. They had turned aside from following the Lord and remembering His precepts. When you consider the great epochs of Israel’s recent past and all that God had done, we may wonder how Israel could possibly reject the God who called them out of slavery, rescued them from certain destruction at the hands of the Egyptians, provided food and water in the wilderness, prevented their clothing and sandals from wearing out, and miraculously sustained them in battle. The reason is the same reason we sin and refuse to believe truth: forgetfulness. We forget the goodness of God and the severity of our own sin. We are prone to remember what is most natural and familiar to us—the passions of our sinful heart. Proverbs 4 tells us that everything we do flows from our hearts (4:23). Quite simply, we do what we love most. Therefore, the essence of obedience stems from a heart that loves God (Deut. 6:5-6; 10:12; 11:13). How do we nurture a heart of obedience? God tells Israel to “remember”—to remember his commandments, to remember his promises, to remember from where they came from, to remember His mighty deeds…(Deut. 5:15; 8:2; 24:18, 32:7, etc.). Love for the Lord is revived by remembering and rehearsing the person and work of God. The opposite is true when we forget. Our love for God withers and diminishes. Obedience becomes drudgery and joyless, and so we pursue something else that promises fulfillment and gratification. As the book of Judges will show us, such a pursuit will only lead to seasons of sorrow and misery. As Israel was called to remember their story and how God rescued them, we too must remember our story and how Jesus rescued us from sin and death. Remind yourself of the gospel, marvel at its beauty, and treasure its truth. Only then will we effectively fight sin and love God out of hearts of obedience. –Pastor Nate

Sunday at Liberty

9AM: Missions Emphasis–Anders Swanson

10AM: Pastor Rory–A Forgotten God–Judges 2:6-3:5 (sermon notes)

6PM: Evening Gathering–How the Lost Will Be Saved–Romans 10:1-17

7PM: Annual Pie Fellowship

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