When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people… – 2Chr. 7:13 NIV
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When King Solomon decided to offer a thousand bulls as sacrifice to the Lord (2Chr. 1:6; 1Kgs. 3:4), anyone would have concluded that there will never be a bigger sacrifice offered again but this record was to be broken by no other than King Solomon himself. He had just completed the building of the temple and in a move that seemed like his expression of appreciation to his people, he prayed for them and blessed them – 2Chr. 6:4-11. He then proceeded to express his appreciation to the Almighty God for granting him grace to start and finish the project and in the process presented a series of requests to Him with regards to the temple and all the people of God who are to worship in it (2Chr. 6:12-42), a request which the Almighty God acknowledged and indicated His approval for by sending fire from heaven to consume the burnt offering he presented to accompany the request – 2Chr. 7:1-2.
This obviously got the people happy and they indicated their joy and gratitude to the Lord by kneeling on the pavement with their faces to the ground as they presented a fellowship offering to the Lord, singing praises to the Him because He is good and His mercies endure for ever – (2Chr. 7:3-4). It was at this stage that the king decided to go higher in terms of the quantity and quality of his offering to the Lord. As offering to the Lord, king Solomon sacrificed twenty-two thousand heads of cattle and one hundred and twenty thousand sheep and goats in appreciation – 2Chr. 7:4-12.
This unprecedented level of sacrifice in addition to his obvious commitment to the course of the Almighty God was probably what earned a visit from the Lord in the course of that same night. Just as it happened the first time he or anyone for that matter offered such a sacrifice, the Almighty God also expressed His appreciation for the recognition, honour and adoration that King Solomon conferred on Him by making several promises to Solomon. The first part of one of the promises is the foundation scripture for today’s devotion – 2Chr. 7:11-22.
In that particular comment, the following revelations were made;
The Almighty God does have the ability to and can;
- Shut the heavens thus preventing rain from falling. This implies that the Almighty God can ensure that whatever investment man makes does not yield the desired and expected reward as He can withdraw blessings that will enhance harvest. It equally means that one can invest efforts into a venture and it will turn out to be all wasted effort because the Almighty God can sabotage it.
- Send locust to devour the land. This means that the Almighty God has the ability to frustrate business efforts with the intention to make them unprofitable and waste whatever may be expected as harvest. So if one escapes somehow with some reward from invested efforts, He has the capability to ensure that the reward is not available to be enjoyed for any positive purpose.
- Send plague among His people. This implies that the Almighty God has the capability to inflict people with various sicknesses.
All the above should make it clear to the average Christian that occurrence of all these events should not be attributed at all times to the enemy unless such is including him/her self amongst the possible enemies in consideration.
A true and forward thinking Christian should be able to know that it is impossible for him/her to be in the good book of the Almighty God and the enemy will still have access to inflict any form of harm, with the Lord being unaware. He will definitely be aware and probably permitted it for reasons ranging from using the event to bring the straying Christian back to Himself to taking glory through that event in the life of the Christian. Awareness of this should make a true Christian spend less time looking for enemies where there is none unless, of course the claim to being a Christian is not genuine.
The Almighty God is a father who grants positive gifts to His children when they behave well but does not hesitate to rebuke any child in any form whatsoever when such strays from His instructions as that remains the way He demonstrates His love – Prov. 3:12; Heb. 12:6-7. He, in such situations of rebuke expects that such a true Christian will acknowledge His love as been demonstrated with the rebuke and quickly do a re-think. Only one that is been deceived by the devil or has made up his/her mind to stop acknowledging Him as father will keep looking for enemies when all he/she needs to do is to appreciate the love being expressed by the Almighty God, look out for the part of his/her life that He is unhappy with, repent and take a decision to amend them. This remains the only way out if indeed the one that is having such experiences desires to get relieved of them. May God grant us the wisdom to see the hand of God in our situation and take the appropriate step to correct ourselves where and when necessary in Jesus name. Amen.
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