Study from God’s Word… 2nd Samuel 21: 1 - … Passage for Reflection: 1st Chronicles 21: 6 – 7 … NIV 6 But Joab did not include Levi and Benjamin in the numbering, because the king's command was repulsive to him. 7 This command was also evil in the sight of God; so he punished Israel.
My Journal for Today: To be quite honest, I really don’t know what my devotional Pastor, Dr. Smith, is trying to say through the highlighted passage today. Clearly, Joab was morally right in being repulsed when David, the King, had ordered a count of the fighting men of Israel. However, God’s word clearly says that the LORD abhorred what Joab did in quiet, probably unseen, protest of David’s orders. God, of course, saw Joab’s protest was God; and that was enough for God to punish the entire nation because of Joab’s “secret” act of defiance.
You know, something like this is raising its ugly head in my life these days. In this nation, though we don’t live under a theocracy, we have a leader who has pushed through legislation which will likely provided for tax-payer supported abortion, something I find morally abhorrent, and something I believe is clearly unGodly. Now my dilemma is probably much like that of Joab responding to his King, David. Do I take the action taught by Romans 13, and follow the dictates of my elected government, which God has allowed to be instituted in this land? Or do I withhold some or all of my taxes because I feel that using my tax dollars to fund abortion is unGodly and unconscionable?
The moral, ethical, and even, legal choices in our world today are getting more polarized and difficult. What is the LORD calling Christians to do, … people like little old me (empathizing with Joab this morning)? Am I to follow our government, as the Bible commands [again, see Rom. 13: 1-7 - linked]; or am I to openly protest what I see as unGodly actions/policies on the part of my government? That’s what we saw Paul and his compatriots do so often in the Book of Acts when the authorities in several places ordered them to be silent in preaching the Gospel? But they would not obey these authorities; and went on spreading the Good News in the world, even though they were acting in opposition to the laws of the land.
So, what are we – what am I – going to do if (and probably more likely “when”) I’m being asked to pay my taxes which I know are going to be used for the killing of innocent babies, whom I also know are loved by the very God Who is allowing my government to do this? Why is God allowing this to happen? What do I do? Do I pay the taxes and pray to God that He will shut down this horrible practice of government funded abortion; or do I openly, and defiantly, withdraw my taxes, risking the outcomes to my defiance? Ugh; … why … why … why; … what … what … what; … when … when… when; … how … how … how???
My Prayer for Today: O LORD, give me the discernment to do Your will and the courage to do it. Shine Your light brightly on my path, LORD, so that I can follow Your way. Amen