Thursday, January 19, 2012

MrsDrPoe: The "S" Cycle of Apostasy

Another Thursday means another Theology Thursday here on the blog!  As always, I invite you to open up your Bibles with me as we look at another portion of God's word.

During this segment of Bible classes, I've been in the study the Judges.  One of our class objectives is to describe the recurring "S" cycle of Israel's apostasy, and our associated goal for the segment is to personally identify factors in our lives that can cause us to fall into this same cycle.

The cycle we see in the time of the judges is:

Sin - each of the children of Israel "did what was right in his own eyes," without regard to God's law
Servitude - as promised, the rampant sinning of Israel was punished by God through oppression by one or more of the surrounding nations
Supplication - after a certain period of time, the children of Israel cry out to God with repentant hearts
Salvation - being a merciful God, the Lord raises up a judge to (typically) militarily rescue Israel from its oppressors

Without fail, shortly after the lives of the children of Israel started going well again, they forsook the Lord and turned back to sin.

In class we've discussed several of the reasons for the continuation of this cycle:

-General Disobedience to God
*Not driving out the inhabitants of the land
*Not destroying the Idols in the land
*Doing what was right in their own eyes

-Evil Associations
*Made covenants with enemies
*Intermarried with the inhabitants of the land

-Poor Leadership
*At the national level (general slacking of priests and tribal leaders)
*At the family level (not teaching children about the Lord)

Since we are given the Old Testament as a selective, redemptive history, it is essential that we examine the text with the intent to make application to our lives.  In the case of the "S" cycle, as our class goal suggests, we need to identify things in our own lives that can cause us to enter this downward spiral:

-General Disobedience to God
*Are we studying the Word of God daily?
*Are we applying the teaching of Jesus in our lives?
*Do we base ALL of our decisions of what God considers to be right?

-Evil Associations
*Are our closest friends trying to get to heaven or doing what's right in their own eyes?
*Are our significant others desiring a God-centered relationship with us?
*What are our hobbies/favorite TV shows/etc.?
*Where can we be found on a Friday/Saturday night?

-Poor Leadership
*Are our husbands leading the family in a Godly direction?
*Are we bringing up our children in the fear and admonition of the Lord?

At the beginning of every new year come new resolutions.  I would encourage you to join me in being resolved to no longer be "charmed by the world's delights" but to instead seek to identify and eliminate the things in my life that cause me to seek the way of the world instead of the way of the Lord.


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