Dead Serious

I received a forwarded email the other day from my mom; actually I had seen it once before a long time ago, but reading it again was compelling. The email basically lists people who scorned or denied God in some way or another, usually publicly, and recounts the terrible demises these people suffered. I’m assuming all of the accounts are true; I haven’t checked them out, and other than John Lennon I’m not familiar with the stories themselves. Valid or not, these stories make a sobering point: God will not tolerate those who show contempt toward Him.

In the Vigilantes Of Love song “Babylon,” Bill Mallonee uses a historical example of what happens to those who deny God’s power: “The Titanic‘s captain said God couldn’t sink her/You might say he learned a healthy respect.” In Galatians 6:7, Paul says it more bluntly, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked” (NIV).

There’s an episode in today’s reading (Acts 12) that paints this picture vividly. After settling a dispute with the people of Tyre and Sidon, King Herod makes an address to the people at Caesarea. In a show of completely misplaced awe the people begin to shout “this is the voice of a god, not a man.”

Now, we know from how Herod’s family story is woven through the Gospels that he had enough exposure to both Judaism and fledgling Christianity to have a healthy respect for His power. However, he didn’t humble himself enough to stop the crowd’s cries, and God immediately struck him down with worms that ate him alive from the inside out…a disgusting, cringeworthy thought, if you ask me.

God is dead serious about His power and sovereignty. I can’t thing of a more fitting response that to be completely humbled by and in awe of Him.

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7 thoughts on “Dead Serious

  1. That actually reminds me of a program I caught on TV about a year or so ago now and I would love to know how true it was (or is)… the guy on there was claiming that any time we (the United States) have turned our back on Israel, we’ve had something ‘big’ happen – naturally… like the California earthquake back in the ’80s or early ’90s… the really devestating hurricanes along the Gulf Coast… It was very interesting, as he lined those up with our different political ‘agendas’. Like I say, I’d like to know how true the timelines were, but I wouldn’t discount it either. I wouldn’t blame Him one bit if He lifted His protective hand off of our nation at this point.

  2. the lyric was just a lyric…i regret it;
    a bit audacious to me now…
    I don’t think God deals with us in any way except mercifully…and he does so precisely because we ALL daily deny him in ways big and small;
    Further:
    The grandiose notion that some how the USA is lovingly “protected by God’ strikes me as an assertion that is neither credible nor Biblical;
    In fact, we’ve just survived a previous administration whose lies and fabrications (while playing upon the fears of the Americana people) have sent 1000’s of our own kids to death in war that has dubious goals to begin with; 20 years ago such audacity would have gotten a president impeached.

  3. Hey Bill and Jess, I appreciate your thoughts, but I didn’t intend to attach any political meaning or personal pride to the lyric. I’m sorry if it looks like I did. My intent was to use it to support the idea that we have no right to deny God His sovereignty and power.

    By the way Bill, I owe you lunch in lieu of a royalty check…

    Great passion creates great writing…

  4. Chris…
    thanks for the clarification…
    i suspect that anytime i write late at night, my “charity filters” are more or less down and i “go off” on a topic;
    all apologies to all…

    My discouragement at the length and repercussions of this war has been probably the single most upsetting historical event i’ve lived through (i’m 54).
    That which often represents itself as “Church” ought to be ashamed of itself for so quickly believing that George Bush’s response represented the “work of God” on these natters.

    PS i like your blog, Chris!

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