2 Chronicles 9-12, Psalm 73
The opposite of love is not hate, but indifference. Helen Keller said, "Science may have found a cure for most evils; but it has found no remedy for the worst of them all-the apathy of human beings." Painted graffiti in bold, black letters on the wall of one university library, says it all, "Apathy Rules". We are looking at a society which is apathetic towards God. Our nation has stripped God from every area of public education and from every public area. Most in my generation may consider themselves religious but are totally apathetic towards the Bible and therefore completely impotent to save their own children from this state of apathy.
We see in today's reading a complete contrast between a Gentile who deeply desired to know God and a Jewish leader who was apathetic. We read in 2 Chr 9 of the Queen of Sheba (possibly Arabia or Ethiopia), who traveled over 1500 miles and probably over 75 days to seek the wisdom of Solomon and his God. This is the heart God desires in us. Opposite to this we read about Rehoboam. After his father, Solomon died, he was immediately faced with a dilemma in 2 Chr 10:4, the people said, "Your father made our yoke heavy; now therefore, lighten the burdensome service of your father and his heavy yoke which he puts on us, and we will serve you." We read in verse 6 that he consulted the elders, whose advice he rejected. We read in verse 8 that he consulted his young friends that he grew up, whose advice he accepted. But, notice he never cared enough to consult with God. We go on to read of the results, a split and divided kingdom. In the summation of his life, we read these telling words in 2 Chr 12:14, "And he did evil, because he did not prepare his heart to seek the Lord."
We have to ask ourselves how important is God to us. Would we travel 1500 miles over 75 days to seek Him out. We read in the Christmas account in Matthew 2, after the wise men approached Herod, though the chief priests and scribes knew the answer as to where the Christ was to be born in Matthew 2:6, and knew that the wise men were on their way to visit Christ, they didn't even care enough to take the 5 mile trip from Jerusalem to Bethlehem to see if it was true. Jesus in answering the scribes and Pharisees says in Matthew 12:42, "The queen of the South will rise up in the judgment with this generation and condemn it, for she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and indeed a greater than Solomon is here." As we approach the Word of God, are we putting in our time, not expecting much, or do we approach the Word as the Bereans did in Acts 17:11, "...they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so." The battle for the souls of our spouses, our children, our friends and neighbors is on. Are we willing to battle or do we believe the battle is already lost. Do we care enough to strip ourselves from any apathy in ourselves and spread the truth of the gospel with abandon. Are we willing to prepare ourselves daily for this battle. The choice is ours, for the battle is not over, until Jesus comes back and says it is over.
Messages from Pastor Lloyd Pulley: