Topic: Backslider-In-Heart II [Thursday 20, April 2017]
Memorise: For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto Dalmatia. – 2 Timothy 4:10
Read: Judges 14:5-10 (KJV)
5 Then went Samson down, and his father and his mother, to Timnath, and came to the vineyards of Timnath: and, behold, a young lion roared against him.
6 And the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and he rent him as he would have rent a kid, and he had nothing in his hand: but he told not his father or his mother what he had done.
7 And he went down, and talked with the woman; and she pleased Samson well.
8 And after a time he returned to take her, and he turned aside to see the carcase of the lion: and, behold, there was a swarm of bees and honey in the carcase of the lion.
9 And he took thereof in his hands, and went on eating, and came to his father and mother, and he gave them, and they did eat: but he told not them that he had taken the honey out of the carcase of the lion.
10 So his father went down unto the woman: and Samson made there a feast; for so used the young men to do.
Bible in One Year: Numbers 8-9, Jeremiah 16:14-17:13
Yesterday, we established that backsliding is a gradual process that remains hidden in the heart and only begins to manifest after it had gotten out of hand. In today’s memory verse, we discover one factor that brings backsliding: the love of the world. 1 John 2:15-16 says,
“15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.”
The Bible passage reveals the character of the love of this present world, by which the heart of Demas, a companion of Paul, was stolen away from the straight and narrow way (2 Timothy 4:10). How far have you been drawn away from the narrow path which you have been treading on for so long? Is the relativism philosophy of this present world doing great damage to the faith which you once had? How far have you been drawn away by the pleasurable things of life? My prayer for you is that the fire of the first love you had for Christ will be reignited, and that you will relate with God and the things of God like when you first believed in Him in Jesus’ Name.
Taking a closer look at the life of Samson as a case study of the backslider-in-heart, one lesson we can learn from today’s Bible reading is that the backslider-in-heart can still be preaching, ministering in songs, doing all kinds of work of the ministry, and even performing miracles, which in the process of backsliding. Although Samson was going down into abomination, when a lion roared against him, he responded with the same ability of the spirit he always had. Judges 14:6 says:
“And the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and he rent him as he would have rent a kid, and he had nothing in his hand: but he told not his father or his mother what he had done.”
As if marrying a Philistine was not enough, on his next trip to Timnath, he went to admire the relics of his conquest, the carcass of a lion he had killed. Behold, the devil had set up a honeycomb right there in the carcass of the dead lion to ensnare him, and Samson fell for it; even though he knew that a Nazirite must not touch the dead body of an animal (Numbers 6:2-8). Samson’s stomach and taste continued to lead him on his downward slide towards destruction, just as they did to Esau (Hebrews 12:16-17). My prayer for you is that your appetite for the things for the world will not destroy you in Jesus’Name.
Prayer Point: Father, don’t let what I love destroy me, and don’t let me love what would destroy me.
Open Heavens Daily Devotional guide was written by Pastor E.A. Adeboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, one of the largest evangelical church in the world and also the President of Christ the Redeemer’s Ministries.