We see in history that Israel has been a stiff-necked people. Even today, many have not yet turned away from sin despite numerous gospel truths from social media, from friends, and from evangelists. Relatively today, even us who professed as Christians cannot fully do away with sin because of our fleshly desires.
In His holiness, He cannot allow sin and mediocrity. There is a certain punishment in sin. In the time of Jeremiah the prophet, the Lord has appointed four kinds of destroyers because of what Manasseh the son of Hezekiah king of Judah, did in Jerusalem (2 Chronicle 33). For he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord and rebuilt the high places and erected altars to the baals, and made Ashteroth, and worshiped all the host of heaven and served them. He burned his sons as an offering, used fortune–telling, omens and sorcery, dealt with mediums and necromancers.
Because of this, God has to send four kinds of destroyers as punishment to what he did. You might not have burned your son or used fortune telling but there is something in your life that has been destroying your relationship with God.
The Four Kinds of Destroyers
- The sword to kill –a sword is used to cut or slice, and in this context, is used to kill life eventually. What has been killing your life, your dreams, your hope, your source of life, your source of finances? What cuts your ties with God? There could be a sword to kill in your life right now set to destroy you and your relationship with Christ. Can you identify it?
- The dogs to tear – Dogs are considered filthy in the Bible times. They depict unrighteousness and should not be seen in the streets. Now they are considered as pets and have been loved in every household. They can be cute but they are actually dangerous. Irritating when they bark loudly. Yet you tolerate sin in your life as if it’s a pet to be cared for. It is howling and embarrassing and yet one you cannot let go of. It’s destroying your family, your career, your ministry, and your relationship with God. Can you name the pets in your spiritual life?
- The birds in the air – Man’s one greatest dream is to fly. Because of this we have built machines that will bring us into the air. Airplanes, parachutes, glides and helicopters. It is thrilling to fly and we can finally fly as the birds in the sky. Then we look down what’s beneath us and we see how high we’ve come. We felt high and mighty not wanting to come down now. We became proud. We dream big dreams that do not involve God and was overcome by ambition. Is there pride in your life that you are not willing to lay down at the foot of God? You might not be proud but your priorities are different from God’s. What do you value the most that you have put it in an altar above God’s throne? Your career, your relationship, your position, your money, your integrity?
- Beasts of the earth to devour and destroy – Tigers, lions, wolves, and all other beasts we are afraid of touching because of their tendency to tear human flesh. And yet some of us play with fire by befriending them. We tame them and they become beauties instead as beasts. Are there temptations in your life which have hidden their identities hiding in the form of a prince but in reality is the devil in disguise? You have something in your hand that is good but is not beneficial. It is taking your time from the Lord. It has consumed your relationship with Him, with your family and friends and from genuine Christlikeness.
And yet God’s ability to forgive is infinite. In verse 10 of 2 Chronicles 33, we see Manasseh repenting. He was captured by Assyria and bound him with chains of bronze, was in distress, he entreated the favor of the LORD his God and humbled himself greatly before the God of his fathers. He prayed to Him and GOD was moved by his entreaty and heard his plea and brought him again to Jerusalem into his kingdom. Then Manasseh knew that the LORD was GOD.
DESPITE the great sins Manasseh committed against God, he heard his cry for forgiveness. We are all like Manasseh who had done things against the Lord. We have destroyers in our lives that if we do not humble ourselves before the Lord, they will devour us before we knew it. God has offered salvation through Jesus Christ.
In your return, I will restore you and you shall stand before me. For I am with you to save you and deliver you declares the LORD. (Jeremiah 15:19-20)
Would you rather be destroyed or saved? For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23).
The destroyers come with a price and yet salvation is free. What would you afford?