Monday, Sept 2

What God Wants For You

Scripture: Ezekiel 17-19, Revelation 7

Ezekiel 18:31–32 Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, people of Israel? 32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!

Observation

In this passage, God (through the prophet Ezekiel) begs Israel to repent and live.  He makes it clear that each person dies for their own sin, not someone else’s, so each person has the opportunity to repent and live.  The chapter ends with this heartfelt plea to repent and live, underscored by God saying that He takes no pleasure in the death of anyone.  

2 Peter 3:9  The Lord is…patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

He doesn’t want anyone to die, but all to live!  He takes no pleasure in someone dying; He is pleased when we live!

Application

So many people have such a negative view of God, and particularly as He is represented in the OT prophets.  They think that He is an angry God, eager to punish, delighting in destruction and death.  

But this is not God’s nature, nor how the prophets fully represent Him.  God wants us to live, to thrive, to flourish!  That’s what brings Him delight.  He takes no pleasure in punishing us, only in helping us thrive.  

Every parent understands this.  I had to discipline my children for their good, because I love them; but I took no pleasure in it.  On the other hand, I find my pleasure in their success; when they flourish, I rejoice.  When they suffer, I suffer too.  

Don’t ever think that you are better than our Heavenly Father!  He loves His children and wants them to prosper and do well and live!  This is another great reason to do what He says: He means it for our good.  He wants us to flourish and live!

Prayer: Lord, thank You for being such a loving Father and wanting the best for us.  Help me today to do what You want, knowing that it’s for my good even when it’s hard.