Posts Tagged ‘Eli’


congressiona-medal-of-honorThe Congressional Medal of Honor was conceived in 1861 The Medal of Honor is awarded in the name of Congress to a person who, while a member of the Armed Services, distinguishes himself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against any enemy of The United States. The deed performed must have been one of personal bravery or self-sacrifice so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his comrades and must have involved risk of life.

  • The Congressional Medal of Honor is the highest award for valor in action against an enemy force which can be bestowed upon an individual serving in the Armed Services of the United States.
  • Presented by the President “for gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty”.
  • President Truman: “I would rather have the blue band of the Medal of Honor around my neck than be President!”
  • Recipients are always saluted, regardless of rank.
  • Since 1862 only 3,465 medals have been awarded to 3,446 men.

Honor is very important to our God. Learning to Value what He considers important is the key to seeing His Blessings upon your life, to seeing His Pathway, His Will for your Life.

We have examined the role of Honor in understanding and learning the Ways of God.

  • If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people.” Exodus 33:13 (NIV)
  • Teach me Your way, O Lord, And lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies. Psalms 27:11 (NKJV)
  • Show me Your ways, O Lord; Teach me Your paths. Psalms 25:4 (NKJV)
  • Teach me thy way, O LORD; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name. (Ps 86:11)

You have to make a decision who you want to follow. You can follow God, or you can follow anything that is left. Following God involves Honoring who and what He says to Honor. That Honor brings rewards. Those rewards involve the presence and power of God in your life. What you do, who you follow determines whether you will enjoy God’s full reward or not.

Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward. 2 John 1:8

Finally I would like us to consider the Ultimate Honor. That thing or person we should value so much, it will open up God’s Pathway of Blessing in our lives.

What is the Ultimate Honor, as Far as God is Concerned?

ultimate-honorNow remember, honor means value, weight. When it comes to God and His creation, what is most important? I contend that the Ultimate Honor we can give God is to See the Value God Places Upon our Life. When We See the Value of our Life, and all that God gas done to give us Life, we will have an entirely new and radical focus on LIFE. The Ultimate Honor does not involve a religion, a set of rules to obey, it involves the Value we place on that which Gives us LIFE. I’m not talking about your momma and your daddy. For I don’t care how much you think you are alive, you are dead unless you see the realize the importance of this Ultimate Honor. To understand, realize the problem that Jesus had with the religious authorities of his day.

You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life. I do not receive honor from men. But I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you. I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name, him you will receive. How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that comes from the only God? Do not think that I shall accuse you to the Father; there is one who accuses you–Moses, in whom you trust. John 5:39-45 (NKJV)

pharisees do not honor JesusThe Pharisees and other religious leaders thought they were giving the proper Honor to God. They were honoring one another. But Jesus said they were not seeking the Honor that comes from only GOD. Jesus went so far as to call them HYPOCRITES:

Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying: ‘These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ ” Matthew 15:6-9 (NKJV)

You can honor people, authorities, even God, but if you do not do that which brings the ultimate Honor, you are wasting your breath. For the Ultimate Honor we can partake of is the Honor God bestows upon us! Jesus said:

Jesus answered, “If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me, of whom you say that He is your God. John 8:54 (NKJV)

What can I do that would make God want to honor me?

“Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation.” Psalms 91:14-16 (NKJV)

“That all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.” John 5:23 (NKJV)

God Honors Us

The greatest Honor in the world is when we are crowned with God’s Honor. The only way to receive this Ultimate Honor is to Honor His Son, Jesus Christ. When we Honor His Son, We are crowned with Glory and Honor, because Jesus was crowned with glory and Honor.

crown-with-gloryGod is calling us to Honor His Son, and when we do, we receive the ultimate Honor. Jesus is the Word. He is God’s revelation of Love and Wisdom. He is the source of Proverbs. He is in every page of this Bible.

Get wisdom! Get understanding! Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth. Do not forsake her, and she will preserve you; Love her, and she will keep you. Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding. Exalt her, and she will promote you; She will bring you honor, when you embrace her. She will place on your head an ornament of grace; A crown of glory she will deliver to you.” Proverbs 4:5-9 (NKJV)

Each one of us has a choice. Each choice determines whether we will live lives crowned with Honor from the Lord, or crowned with shame. Whether our lives will have impact and influence for eternity, or whether we will just be a grave marker. Who will you choose to honor? What or Who are you going to consider the most important thing in your life. If you seek after God and His Son, He will crown you with Honor. That will give Him Honor!

CONSIDER ELI:

Why do you kick at My sacrifice and My offering which I have commanded in My dwelling place, and honor your sons more than Me, to make yourselves fat with the best of all the offerings of Israel My people?’ 1 Samuel 2:29 (NKJV)

consider-eliBut now the Lord says: ‘Far be it from Me; for those who honor Me I will honor, and those who despise Me shall be lightly esteemed. 31 Behold, the days are coming that I will cut off your arm and the arm of your father’s house, so that there will not be an old man in your house. 32 And you will see an enemy in My dwelling place, despite all the good which God does for Israel. Then I will raise up for Myself a faithful priest who shall do according to what is in My heart and in My mind. (1 Samuel 2:30-33)

God wanted a Priest who would obey Him over pleasing himself or people. That is why God chose to replace Eli with Samuel.

CONSIDER ABRAHAM:

consider-abrahamAbraham finally had Isaac at the age of 100. He had waited 25 years for this promised son. He loved him more than anything in the world. Sometime later, God tested Abraham’s faith. “Abraham!” God called. “Yes,” he replied. “Here I am.” “Take your son, your only son—yes, Isaac, whom you love so much—and go to the land of Moriah. Go and sacrifice him as a burnt offering on one of the mountains, which I will show you.” The next morning Abraham got up early. He saddled his donkey and took two of his servants with him, along with his son, Isaac. Then he chopped wood for a fire for a burnt offering and set out for the place God had told him about. Genesis 22:1-3 (NLT)

“Don’t lay a hand on the boy!” the angel said. “Do not hurt him in any way, for now I know that you truly fear God. You have not withheld from me even your son, your only son.” Genesis 22:12 (NLT). God honored Abraham becasue he chose to honor God above even his only son.

CONSIDER MOSES:

And it came to pass on the way, at the encampment, that the Lord met him and sought to kill him. Then Zipporah took a sharp stone and cut off the foreskin of her son and cast it at Moses’ feet, and said, “Surely you are a husband of blood to me!” So He (God) let him go. Then she said, “You are a husband of blood!”–because of the circumcision. Exodus 4:24-26 (NKJV)

consider-mosesNow a lot is left out from this account, and most people ignore these verses because they make no sense. Why would God try to kill Moses after He had just sent Him to Egypt to lead His people home? I think we can fill in the blanks. Imagine this scene:

Moses goes into the kitchen and tells his honey Zipporah that they have to pack the bags and move to Egypt. God has a special job for him. Zipporah, being the loving wife she is, says great, I’ll start packing. Moses says, God reviewed His covenant with Abraham with me, and told me I must circumcise our two boys….Wll, iprah says, lets start with Gershom, he’s the oldest. Ziprah watches as Moses performs the circumcision. She watches as Gershom screams out in agony, and then writes in agonizing pain on the ground. It hoorifies her. What kind of God would demand something so bloody and cruel? So Mom steps in and refuses to let four year old Eliezer be circumcised. She gathers him in her arms and says over her dead body will you circumcise Eliezer. A terrible fight erupts. It may have gone on for hours, but finally Moses gives up, after all he has an important job to do. He gives in and says, let’s go. On the way to Egypt, God comes into the camp to kill Moses because Moses honored his wife above honoring what God told him to do.

Zipporah realizes Moses is about to be killed and so she races to circumcise Eliezer and then casts the bloody foreskin at Moses.

Now why didn’t God try to kill Zipporah? Because Moses had been told to do something by God, and Moses was responsible to carry it out. Moses compromised and honored his wife above God. Moses nevermade that mistake again.

HONOR GOD ABOVE ALL

Who are you choosing to Honor in your life?

  • When you lay your head on your pillow, what occupies your thoughts?
  • When you awake in the morning, what occupies your thoughts?

Those are the things you honor more than God. We are to Honor God above all. In seeking to honor Him first, we bring honor upon our lives. That in turn honors God.

How Does Honoring God bring Honor upon our Lives?

covenant-with-abrahamWhen Abraham was 99 years old, God appeared to Abraham. Turn to Genesis 15, verse one. Abraham had honored God rather than riches when he refused the spoil from the King of Sodom. He had honored God with a tithe of all he possessed. He may have had doubts about continuing to honor God, because God had not given Him a son, as God had promised. When God repeated again that He was going to reward Abraham for honoring Him as his God, Abraham said how can I know this?

God gave him a grocery list, and said to cut the animals in half. He had to look at them for a few hours, and wonder what it meant. He even had to keep the buzzards away. Finally it grew dark, and Abraham fell into a deep sleep. This was not a peaceful sleep. He was filled with horror and deep dark blackness. I don’t know how long it lasted. It appears to have been into the next day. I believe God was speaking to his subconscious. When we encounter Holy God, it reveals the horribleness of our heart. God spoke to Abraham, and revealed His covenant with him. As God told Abraham of the future, all of a sudden a smoking oven and a burning torch passed between the pieces. And God pronounced His covenant with Abraham and his descendants.

What were the smoking oven and burning torch? They were symbols of God Himself.

God was passing between the bloody pieces. God could only swear by Himself that He would accomplish this covenant. In effect He was saying that if he did not accomplish His word, then may he be as these bloody animals, cut apart!

The one passing between the bodies is always the one responsible for keeping the covenant.

Now why should we Honor God? And how does that bring honor to us?

covenant-of-life-and-peaceBecause God has made a covenant with each one of us. God wants each one of us to fall into a deep sleep, dead from the influence and concerns of this world. He wants us to see how horrible our sins are to Him, how horrible the judgment of Hell that is upon us will be. Then He wants us to wake and look up and see His Son hanging upon the cross, His body broken and bloody, for He has become the Assurance of God’s Covenant of Honor with us. Jesus Christ has appeared suspended between hell and heaven, Satan and God, Unholy Man and Holy God. Jesus body was pierced by the sword, symbolizing the sacrifice cut in two. His blood was shed because God’s Covenants are ALWAYS BLOODY covenants, for God has said that LIFE is in the blood. If we are to have LIFE as God intends it, we must enter into this bloody covenant with God. It has been secured by Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son. God has honored us with His Son. The Ultimate Honor is having Peace & Life through His Son.

COVENANT OF PEACE and LIFE

Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen. Hebrews 13:20-21 (KJV)

God made a Covenant with us so that we would Honor Him and walk with Reverence before His Name. In return, we have His Peace, His Life, and His Honor! We can live in Honor before a Righteous Holy God!

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity. Ephesians 2:13-16 (NKJV)

My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name. Malachi 2:5 (KJV)

To refuse to Honor God with our lives is to spit upon God’s Love, to slap the Son of God and say with clinched fist “I DON’T NEED YOU”. I don’t need Peace with God! If you refuse to Honor Jesus Christ with your life, you refuse to Honor Holy God. You refuse to Honor the Covenant of Peace which God has offered each one of us.

Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing. For “He who would love life And see good days, Let him refrain his tongue from evil, And his lips from speaking deceit. Let him turn away from evil and do good; Let him seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their prayers; But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” 1 Peter 3:8-12 (NKJV)

When we take communion we are renewing our covenant with God through His Son Jesus Christ. We are also renewing our covenant to Love one another, to love those who are our brothers and sisters.

Are You Kicking at the Cross?

God asked ELI: Why do you kick at My sacrifice and My offering which I have commanded in My dwelling place, and honor your sons more than Me?

Some of you may be kicking at God, some of you may be kicking at Jesus, some of you may be kicking at fellow Christians, some of you may be kicking at parents, in-laws.YOU ARE kicking-at-the-crossBRINGING SHAME ON YOUR LIFE AND YOU ARE BRINGING SHAME ON THIS BODY AND ON JESUS CHRIST. YOU ARE NOT SEEKING WISDOM. YOU ARE NOT SEEKING TO HONOR THE LIFE THAT GOD GIVES YOU IN JESUS CHRIST.

YOU ARE MAD AT A FAMILY MEMBER. YOU ARE MAD AT AN IN-LAW. YOU ARE UNFORGIVING OF A CHRISTIAN BROTHER OR SISTER. YOU ARE TALKING BAD ABOUT THEM.

SOME OF US ARE KICKING AT FALLEN BROTHERS. HOW? BY IGNORING THE SITUATION, OR TALKING BAD ABOUT IT. EVEN TALKING BAD ABOUT EACH OTHER. YOU MAY THINK YOU ARE RIGHT, BUT I ASSURE YOU SUCH DOES NOT HONOR GOD, IT DOES NOT HONOR HIS WORD IT DOES NOT BRING HONOR TO YOUR LIFE.

Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. But we know that the judgment of God is according to truth against those who practice such things. And do you think this, O man, you who judge those practicing such things, and doing the same, that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance? But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who “will render to each one according to his deeds”: eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness–indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek; but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For there is no partiality with God. Romans 2:1-11 (NKJV)

We are not to Kick anyone when they are down:

Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed. Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled; Hebrews 12:11-15 (NKJV)

kneeling-at-the-crossI want our church to be a place where people can experience the Covenant of Life and Peace that God made with us through His Son. I want us to be a church that honors God by honoring the downtrodden, those that are broken. I want our church to experience the ultimate Honor, being Honored by God because we seek to Honor the Life of Jesus Christ living in us by Faith.

My covenant was with him of life and peace; and I gave them to him for the fear wherewith he feared me, and was afraid before my name. Malachi 2:5 (KJV)

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honor-church-leadersIt is a night to be much observed unto the LORD for bringing them out from the land of Egypt: this is that night of the LORD to be observed of all the children of Israel in their generations. Ex 12:42

Have you ever had a night so wonderful, so memorable that you could remember every detail of that night one year later? What about 5 years? What about 50 years? The Jewish people have been remembering a night that happened over 3700 years ago. Wow, that must have been some night! Such a night was remembered because of its importance to the God of this universe and to the people of this world He created.

Moses had instructed all the people two weeks earlier to take a yearling lamb, without spot or blemish, and on the 10th day of the month bring it into your home. Then four days later they were to kill that lamb, eat the lamb, and take its blood and put it upon the lintel of their front door. At midnight, the Angel of the Lord went throughout the land of Egypt, and wherever he saw the blood of the lamb, he would pass over the house. Where there was no blood, he would enter the home and slay the first born son.

You shall observe this rite as a statute for you and for your sons forever. And when you come to the land that the LORD will give you, as he has promised, you shall keep this service. And when your children say to you, ‘What do you mean by this service?’ you shall say, ‘It is the sacrifice of the LORD’s Passover, for he passed over the houses of the people of Israel in Egypt, when he struck the Egyptians but spared our houses.’” And the people bowed their heads and worshiped. Then the people of Israel went and did so; as the LORD had commanded Moses and Aaron, so they did. (Exo 12:24-28)

This story is an excellent demonstration of the importance of Honor for church leaders, your pastor, deacons and Sunday school teachers.

Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you. (Heb 13:17)

applying-the-bloodNow imagine if Joe and his wife Sarah had skipped church to go fishing or shopping or whatever. Moses and Aaron had instructed everyone on what to do. They weren’t at the meeting. They got back into town and didn’t know what all the buzz was about. They heard snippets of lamb and blood, but they thought that sounded absurd. They started talking to their friends and got them questioning what Moses said. Don’t you think that is a bit extreme? To waste a perfectly good lamb like that? Blood on my new door post? Why I’ll never be able to get that off! Why I just spent $500 on a new door! Before long a whole group of people had decided to ignore Moses and Aaron. So they lightly regarded the words of Moses and influenced other people to do the same. Honor leads us to value church leaders, and give weight to what they tell us. Dishonor leads us to scorn and devalue what church leaders tell us. To treat it like some teenagers treat the words of their parents.

Midnight came, the Angel went into their homes, they heard a noise, that woke them, going into their son’s bedroom, they found his throat cut. In fact, every one of their friends who scorned the instruction of Moses discovered the same grizzly scene.

a-cry-goes-out-at-midnightAnd Pharaoh rose up in the night, he and all his servants and all the Egyptians. And there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where someone was not dead. (Exo 12:30)

What kind of night would be remembered for 3700 years? The night that meant the difference between life and death for you and your family.

do-not-curse-church-leadersHonor for church leaders is critical for your lives? Why? Perhaps we can glimpse the ways of God by reading Acts 23:1-5. Paul demonstrates the importance of Honoring Church Leaders. When he was commanded to be slapped by some old guy, he hurled a stern verbal insult at him. Then someone whispered in his ear that the old guy was Ananias, the High Priest! He quickly apologized, quoting Exodus 22:28 “You shall not revile God, nor curse a ruler of your people.” God equates cursing a church leader with reviling God!

When you honor your church leaders, you are honoring God. They are God’s messengers, God’s representatives. We demonstrate our honor of God by honoring the Leaders He has set before us.

Jesus took this cursing one step further. It is not the words you speak that matters, it is the heart attitude you have. You can say “yes” with your mouth but be going “Yea right like I’m gonna do that” with your heart.

Paul said: Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls. Church leaders are keeping watch over your souls. That is their job. And how you honor your church leaders will determine the reward of how goes your soul.

Honor Determines the Destiny of your soul.

Joh 12:26 If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him.

honor-determines-the-destiny-of-your-soulPaul wrote to obey your leaders, for they watch over your souls. The Gospel of Christ is inexplicably tied to the preaching of His Word. If you do not honor the messenger, you dishonor the Word. God honors his servants, for they follow Christ, and He honors His Son.

The Cross is the Anchor of the Christian Walk. Our daily walk, our daily life in Christ must begin at the cross. At the cross we lay aside our fleshly wants and desires, our sin and selfishness, and put on the Lord Jesus Christ. At the cross we lay claim of the exchanged life. At the cross we identify with the Resurrected Reigning Jesus Christ who lives in us and through us. At the cross we realize that God uses pastors and deacons and elders and teachers to build up the church, to work to conform us to Jesus Christ. We honor the cross in their life and the fact that they are God’s messengers to us.

To dishonor the preacher, the pastor, the Sunday school teacher is to scorn the Savior whom they serve.

Can’t I go direct to Jesus? Yes you can. But understand the God has a divine order of things. He has given gifts to the church to build it up, to teach to chasten to rebuke to instruct. If you fail to honor God’s Way, you are playing with the destiny of your soul.

parable-of-the-talentsJesus told a parable of the ruler who gave talents to his servants, and then went away. One servant said he feared the master, so he went and hid his talent.

He failed to honor his pastor (so to speak) and robbed himself of spiritual rewards.

“For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master’s money. Now after a long time the master of those servants came and settled accounts with them. And he who had received the five talents came forward, bringing five talents more, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me five talents; here I have made five talents more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’ And he also who had the two talents came forward, saying, ‘Master, you delivered to me two talents; here I have made two talents more.’ His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’ He also who had received the one talent came forward, saying, ‘Master, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed, so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.’ But his master answered him, ‘You wicked and slothful servant! You knew that I reap where I have not sown and gather where I scattered no seed? Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest. So take the talent from him and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to everyone who has will more be given, and he will have an abundance. But from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ (Mat 25:14-30)

dishonor-robs-you-of-light-and-rewardsWhen you fail to honor the requests of your church leaders, you rob yourself of these benefits:

  • You rob yourself of spiritual light for salvation,
  • Your rob your children of spiritual light, for they will grow up with an attitude of scorn toward the church, toward the pastor.
  • You rob yourself of rewards for God uses His messengers to speak to you, guide you and to watch over the welfare of your souls.

roast-preacherThe Pastor, the Sunday school teachers, are entrusting you with wealth in the form of spiritual truth. To honor them means to grow in the truth they teach, to honor their teaching. The benefit is eternal. When you fail to honor them, you will walk in darkness.

Sometimes we have Roast Preacher on the after church menu. This teaches dishonor to our children. Learn to Honor the Pastor at meal time.

Honor Determines the Prosperity of your soul.

The righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like a cedar in Lebanon. They are planted in the house of the LORD; they flourish in the courts of our God. They still bear fruit in old age; they are ever full of sap and green, to declare that the LORD is upright; he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him. (Psa 92:12-15)flourish-as-the-cedar-tree

Those who honor church leaders honor the Lord. They will be planted in the house of the Lord. They will flourish in the courts of our God.

“Well I go to church. I give a little money.” But that is not being planted. Planted implies you grow roots. You establish relationships. I’m not saying that you should be here every time the doors are open. But you should seek to Honor God by your faithfulness to the leadership of the church.

I have a friend whom I used to teach in Sunday School. We along with some others helped to start Lenexa Baptist Church in 1990. After a year or so we called a young clothing salesman from Oklahoma. He had pastored a couple small churches in Oklahoma. He was kind of green. He and I spent some time together at youth camp, and he shared that he was Calvinistic in his theology. But he was still very evangelistic. I respected his views and advised him to keep it under his hat. Well, he let it slip one Wednesday night, and it got spread among the deacons. One deacon, my friend was quite adamant about getting Pastor Steve to resign. He got several other deacons stirred up. They called a meeting in which they called on Steve to resign. I, along with another deacon stood up for Pastor Steve and called for respect for Steve, and pleaded for sound minds to prevail. Well, they got all upset and quit, and all of a sudden a church that was pushing 150 became a church of 90. (Steve stuck it out and today Lenexa Baptist runs a couple thousand plus every Sunday)

I believe my friend’s life was impacted by his dishonor. He lost his wife and he lost his children. He is became a Pastor, and has struggled in pastoring. Now he is pastoring even though he has had a divorce. His children are alienated. He has struggled with honor in his pastorate. I believe when you dishonor church leaders, you will reap dishonor in your life.

I was witness to another deacon revolt at a growing young church in Olathe, and I stood on behalf of the pastor once again. This time seven deacons decided to leave. I don’t know how their lives turned out, but I do know it destroyed the heart of the pastor Tom Grove. It also caused the church to fold. He had done nothing worthy of their treatment, and a man’s ministry was destroyed. Other lives were affected. Woe to all those who cause others to stumble.

honor-determines-the-direction-of-your-familyHonor Determines the Direction of Your Family

Eli is a picture of the way dishonor for God can ruin your family and even your descendants.

And there came a man of God to Eli and said to him, “Thus the LORD has said, ‘Did I indeed reveal myself to the house of your father when they were in Egypt subject to the house of Pharaoh? Did I choose him out of all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to go up to my altar, to burn incense, to wear an ephod before me? I gave to the house of your father all my offerings by fire from the people of Israel. Why then do you scorn my sacrifices and my offerings that I commanded, and honor your sons above me by fattening yourselves on the choicest parts of every offering of my people Israel?’ Therefore the LORD, the God of Israel, declares: ‘I promised that your house and the house of your father should go in and out before me forever,’ but now the LORD declares: ‘Far be it from me, for those who honor me I will honor, and those who despise me shall be lightly esteemed. Behold, the days are coming when I will cut off your strength and the strength of your father’s house, so that there will not be an old man in your house. Then in distress you will look with envious eye on all the prosperity that shall be bestowed on Israel, and there shall not be an old man in your house forever. The only one of you whom I shall not cut off from my altar shall be spared to weep his eyes out to grieve his heart, and all the descendants of your house shall die by the sword of men. And this that shall come upon your two sons, Hophni and Phinehas, shall be the sign to you: both of them shall die on the same day. (1Sa 2:27-34)

eli-fell-over-and-diedThose who Honor God, He will honor. Those who despise me shall be lightly esteemed. Your children will not honor you, God will not honor you. Sure enough, his sons were slain, and when Eli heard the news, He keeled over and broke his neck and died.

How Honor Built a Godly Family

rechabites-honored-their-fatherHave you heard of the Rechabites? Read about them in Jeremiah 35.

Jeremiah called the descendants of Rechab in to the temple and offered them wine to drink. But they answered, “We will drink no wine, for Jonadab the son of Rechab, our father, commanded us, ‘You shall not drink wine, neither you nor your sons forever. You shall not build a house; you shall not sow seed; you shall not plant or have a vineyard; but you shall live in tents all your days, that you may live many days in the land where you sojourn.’

They had honored their father Jonadab for over two hundred years. And because they had demonstrated honor, Jeremiah offered this word from the Lord: “But to the house of the Rechabites Jeremiah said, “Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Because you have obeyed the command of Jonadab your father and kept all his precepts and done all that he commanded you, therefore thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Jonadab the son of Rechab shall never lack a man to stand before me.””

When we honor the Lord, and we honor the lord’s messengers, we can ask God that of our children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and beyond there will never be a time that one of our descendants will not stand before the Lord God. To me that would be the greatest reward, that my children and grandchildren would walk before the Lord. This is a Godly Heritage. This is a Legacy, that my family stands before the Lord!

Do You Doubt the importance of Honoring your church leaders? God repeats the command:

We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves. (1Th 5:12-13)

They are the only ones whom God says are worthy of Double Honor.

Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.” (1Ti 5:17-18)

If you have dishonored your church leaders in the past, confess your sin, there is mercy and forgiveness at the cross. Confess your sin to your children, there is mercy and forgiveness at the cross.

My Dad was an Area Committee Coordinator for the Institute in Basic Youth Conflicts. It was late 1979 and early 1980 that the Institute was rocked by a scandalous discovery. It was discovered that Steve, Bill Gothard’s brother, was carrying on affairs with some of the staff secretaries. Rumors flew around the country. Some accused Bill, and at best said he should have known about it. Many said he did know and was even involved. It drove Bill to resign from his own ministry. But the board did a thorough investigation and asked Bill to come back. There were other problems as well.

looking-unto-jesusThrough it all my Dad kept faithfully serving, never got involved in the rumors, never showed any dishonor toward Bill or the organization. I couldn’t believe it. I remember one day going in to my dad’s office and saying, Dad, how can you continue to serve Bill the way you do?

He just looked at me and said, Son, I keep my eyes on Jesus.


tompkinsindustries1When I was at Tompkins Industries, we were trying to increase our walk-in traffic for our hydraulic hose repair business. We wanted more construction guys to come to us to get new hoses made when the OEM hose broke. It was around 1979 and I thought we could use a rewards punch card to generate repeat business. Not being very creative, I made it a simple reward, get 10 hoses made and get 20 bucks back. All of a sudden we started seeing more of the same guys. And they were bringing more hoses with them. We were having to give out some money too.

But a fellow worker, Dan Turnbull, had another idea. Obviously Dan was more in tune with the kind of guy who walks around with broken hydraulic hoses. Dan suggested we give Buck knives as a reward. Wow! We started to see a lot more guys. They had a whole assortment of Buck Knives they could choose from. Tompkins Industries still rewards loyal customers with Buck Knives. I have heard that they are one of the largest Buck Knife dealers in the country.

Rewards have an amazing impact on our lives. We encounter rewards on a daily basis. As a child our parents used rewards for our behavior. In school our teachers used rewards to get us to learn. In our jobs our employers use rewards to get us to work. (If you look at a paycheck as a reward). In marriage, unfortunately, husbands and wives use rewards to further their relationship. Rewards are all around us, ingrained into our thinking and actions.

rewardscardsWe have even been brain washed by credit card companies to spend money because we think we are rewarded when we do so. They call them Rewards Cards! When I was using my American Express Card for my business, at one time we accumulated over 500,000 awards points. You say boy Jim you must have been a good boy! No, you got that many points because you spent $500,000 dollars (some things got triple points). It took 4 or 5 years to accumulate that many points, but they were gone just like that. They like you to spend money, but what you get in return is so overpriced. It is better to save the money and then buy your own reward at a cheaper price. You save all around.

churchrewardsChurches have gotten into the reward thing too. They offer Starbucks Coffee bars, gymnasiums with complete health clubs. I would love to go to a church with such “perks” but is that why we should go to church? We have become such a reward oriented society that inner character takes a back seat to outer behavior. Cheating in High Schools and Colleges is an accepted fact because the rewards are so great! Character doesn’t matter, results do.

We all want God’s Blessings in our lives. We all want to be disease free, money in the bank, large house, multiple nice new cars, kids all loving and successful, grand kids healthy, smart and on a track for success. We want a Hollywood kind of life. We pray the prayer of Jabez and expect that to open our lives to riches untold.

God is very clear in His Word what He considers blessing. God is very clear what He considers a Reward. If we are to find the “Pathway of Blessing” we need to understand what Rewards are and how does God Reward us in our Christian walk! Does God reward us because we go to church? Does God reward us because we tithe 10 percent? What is the basis of Reward? What opens the “Pathway of Blessing” to us.

pathwayWe began our series with our foundational verse:

Psalms 25:4 Show me Your ways, O Lord; teach me Your paths.

If we are going to allow God to teach us His pathway of Blessing, we have to submit ourselves to His ways, which are higher than our ways. The Children in the Wilderness never learned the pathway that God had for them because they would not submit to knowing His ways.

We were introduced to the importance of Honor toward Jesus Christ in allowing Him to work in our lives, and to guide us into the Pathway of Blessing. This past week God gave me a fresh personalization of Proverbs 3:5,6, and I would like all of us to learn this.

I am not changing SCRIPTURE, but I am internalizing it, making it my own. John 3:16 is just a verse some crazy guy holds up at football games. But when it becomes your verse, it is life changing. It has the power to give you new life. When you realize that God loved me so very much that He sent His only Son Jesus Christ to be born in the form of a man so that He could become sin fo me, and that if I believe that what Jesus did for me means that my sins are forever forgiven, that God now lives in me and because I have a new nature-God’s Nature I will have eternal Life with God-that is when John 3:16 packs power!

prov356Proverbs 3:5,6 takes on a totally new meaning when we personalize it this way:

I want our church, our people to understand the importance of Honor in discovering God’s Blessings and Rewards. If we are to do so, we can no longer depend and trust in our fleshly, finite understanding. God’s ways are higher than our ways, His thoughts are Higher than. We must ask God to open our hearts and minds to His ways and His words!

2 John 1:8 (NKJV) Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward.

Are you receiving a Full Reward from Jesus? Do you know what you must do in order to even hope of receiving a full reward?

fullrewardsI’m not talking about heavenly rewards. I’m talking of the rewards of our Life in Jesus Christ! Jesus came to give us live and that abundantly! There is meant to be rewards for following Jesus! We’ve lost sight of the Power of the path of Jesus! When the apostles preached the doctrine of Jesus, people were changed, lives were energized, rewards were poured out upon the people. It was powerful to be a follower of Jeus Christ. That Power effected their work, their home life, their marriage, their possessions, their way of life. it also affected their outlook toward struggles, toward persecutions, toward thieves, towards personal losses. Why did followers of Christ subject their lives to such drastic changes, changes that effected every aspect of their life? Because of the REWARDS!

Yes, there will be rewards in heaven. We will have to appear before the bema seat and answer to God:bemaseat

But I believe Jesus taught us about earthly rewards! The Life of a Christian is to be a life of REWARD! Each ones rewards are different because God has a different path for each one of us. But there are REWARDS! And what you do determines if you lose those rewards or end up with partial rewards!

Am I preaching a Prosperity Gospel? Yes I am. If you do as I am going to teach you will prosper beyond your wildest imaginations. You will prosper the way God measures prosperity!

  • Deuteronomy 29:9 (NKJV) Therefore keep the words of this covenant, and do them, that you may prosper in all that you do.
  • Psalms 10:5 (NKJV) His ways are always prospering; Your judgments are far above, out of his sight; As for all his enemies, he sneers at them.
  • Joshua 1:7 (NKJV) Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go.

God’s Pathway is a Pathway of Blessing, a Pathway of Prospering.

Consider Ruth:

ruthRuth 2:11-12 (NKJV) And Boaz answered and said to her, “It has been fully reported to me, all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth, and have come to a people whom you did not know before. The Lord repay your work, and a full reward be given you by the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge.”

Now Ruth chose to follow after he mother-in-law. It was a way of poverty, a way of ridicule, for she was a Moabitess. Boaz prayed that she would receive the full-reward because of the path she had travelled on. If you read the “rest of the story” you learn that God indeed gave her a full reward, for Boaz, a wealthy man, married her, and through their union, the Christ child came.

What did Ruth do that made God want to reward her? I’ll reveal that in a moment, but first, what is

“FULL REWARD” IN MAN’S EYES…

phariseesIn Matthew we find Jesus teaching about Pharisees. He mentions that because of what they did they had their “full reward”. Jesus lets us see the difference between man’s idea of full reward, and what God’s idea is. Matthew 6:1-6 (NIV) 1 “Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2 “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 3 But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 5 “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Man’s idea of Reward is anything that is visible. It is success, praise of men, money, fast car-anything that is visible and smells of success. Jesus said God’s reward only comes upon the invisible, on that which we don’t see. Those hidden prayers, those secrete gifts, secret acts of compassion. Those are the things that God gives a full reward for. So if God rewards secret and hidden thoughts actions and attitudes, could his rewards be similar, perhaps even unseen by the world, or more importantly unnoticed by the world?

  • The world rewards the Flashy, the Confident, God rewards the humble of heart.
  • The world rewards the Rich, God rewards the poor widow who gave her last mite.

The Full Rewards of God cannot be purchased by money, they cannot be won by lottery, they cannot be given, for they come from God alone. They are that magnificent.

God’s Full Rewards: They touch our Innermost Being.

1. Reward of Peace: If one follows the pathway of God he will be rewarded with a deep peace that comes from abiding in the Prince of Peace. Proverbs 3:17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, And all her paths are peace. Men have spent enormous sums of money to buy peace in their soul, but such peace is the reward of one who walks in the pathway that God has for Him.

2. Reward of Rest: One who walks in God’s Pathway “Shall not be afraid of evil tidings, His heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord” (Ps 112:7) His heart will be free from the fear of evil. What better reward than a complete rest from worry, anxiety and a calm assurance that there is no fear on God’s Pathway.

3. Reward of Good: Another part of the believer’s great gain lies in the consciousness that all things are working together for his good. Nothing is, after all, able to injure us. Neither pains of body, nor sufferings of mind, nor losses in business, nor cruel blows of death, can work us real ill. Jeremiah 6:16 (NKJV) Thus says the Lord: “Stand in the ways and see, And ask for the old paths, where the good way is, And walk in it; Then you will find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’

4. Reward of Joy Psalms 16:11 (NKJV) 11 You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. The full reward of God is a life lived with the utmost of purpose, fulfillment and joy. No matter what the trials, the difficulties, the sickness, God gives us the full reward of His Joy regardless of circumstances. When you have sustained a trial which once would have crushed you, the victory is exceedingly sweet.

5. Reward of God’s Ear When you abide in Christ and walk in His Pathway, you have God’s ear when you call unto Him. Psalms 37:23-24 (NKJV) The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord, And He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the Lord upholds him with His hand. If God is always holding your hand, He’s always going to be listening when you call!

What Did Ruth Do to earn a Full Reward? What Must each one of us do to earn a Full Reward?

Ruth Demonstrated the “Honor Principle”

honor-principle

Ruth honored Naomi. She also honored Naomi’s God! We Must Apply the Honor Principle to our daily lives. In the Book “Honor’s Reward, John Bevere details what he calls the “Honor Principle”. This Honor Principle is simply stated in I Samuel 2:30:in 1 Samuel 2:30: “Those who Honor me I will Honor, and those who despise me shall be lightly esteemed.”Eli was a High Priest, and worthy of Honor because of his office. His sons were causing disgrace to God, because of their debauchery and dishonoring of the office of Priest. So God said that Eli had lost his reward, in fact his family would be totally removed from serving as Priest. Eli and Eli’s family lost his reward.

Showing Honor is an essential Key in finding God’s Pathway of Blessing. Blessing in your personal and public life. Blessing that provides God’s Full Reward.

1. Partial Reward

Jesus was not honored by the people who knew him, the people of Nazareth. In fact, Matthew says they were offended at Him. Mark records He was able to only heal a few people.

Mark 6:4-5 (ESV) 4 And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” 5 And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them.

honorprincipledeterminesrewards2. No-Reward Situation – Healing of the Paraplegic Luke 5:17-26

17 Now it happened on a certain day, as He was teaching, that there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come out of every town of Galilee, Judea, and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was present to heal them. 18 Then behold, men brought on a bed a man who was paralyzed, whom they sought to bring in and lay before Him. 19 And when they could not find how they might bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the housetop and let him down with his bed through the tiling into the midst before Jesus. 20 When He saw their faith, He said to him, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.” 21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 22 But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, He answered and said to them, “Why are you reasoning in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise up and walk’? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”–He said to the man who was paralyzed, “I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.” 25 Immediately he rose up before them, took up what he had been lying on, and departed to his own house, glorifying God. 26 And they were all amazed, and they glorified God and were filled with fear, saying, “We have seen strange things today!”

Surely one Pharisee needed healing. The Power of God was present to heal, but it did not heal any of the Pharisees. They were dishonoring Jesus in their hearts. They were amazed, but they received no reward. They received no reward because they failed to Honor the Son of God.

3. Full-Reward

fullrewardMatthew 8:5-13 (NKJV) 5 Now when Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him, pleading with Him, 6 saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, dreadfully tormented.” 7And Jesus said to him, “I will come and heal him.” 8 The centurion answered and said, “Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes; and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” 10 When Jesus heard it, He marveled, and said to those who followed, “Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel! 11 And I say to you that many will come from east and west, and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. 12 But the sons of the kingdom will be cast out into outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” 13 Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go your way; and as you have believed, so let it be done for you.” And his servant was healed that same hour.

This officer obeyed his commander. His men obeyed him. He was saying to Jesus that he had authority because he honored his country and his superiors by respecting their authority. So all I have to do is speak the word, and those under me respond immediately to my commands.

The Key phrase “I ALSO”. He knew that all Jesus had to do is speak a command, and the servant would be healed.

Jesus was blown away at this man’s faith. No one, not the Jews, the Pharisees had even come close to this man’s faith. This Gentile centurion had put it together- He saw the relationship between Honor and Authority. He received a Full Reward because he rendered honor and understood authority.

canaanite-womanIn Mark 7 another Gentile woman came to Jesus for help with her demon possessed daughter. She knew he had the power to heal her. When she asked, he ignored her. As he ignored her, she continued to beg until finally Jesus said that it is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the dogs. Jesus called this woman a dog. Now if she had been an American woman, she would have gotten in his face and reamed him out.

But she did something amazing, she honored him, she honored his authority by simply saying, Yes Lord, yet even the little dogs under the table eat from the children’s crumbs..

Jesus said, for this saying, the demons have gone from your daughter.

She received her full reward!

The Honor Principle: Do You Want to See Jesus?

Luke 13:34-35 (NKJV) 34 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing! 35 See! Your house is left to you desolate; and as

see-jesus

suredly, I say to you, you shall not see Me until the time comes when you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’ “

You will never see Jesus until you learn to honor those that He sends. When we honor the messengers of Jesus, we honor Him.

Jesus washed the feet of the disciples in John 13: John 13:5-7 (ESV) Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?” Jesus answered him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but afterward you will understand.”

We all know the story. But after he did he said an amazing truth:

John 13:20 (NKJV) Most assuredly, I say to you, he who receives whomever I send receives Me; and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me.”

Jesus applies the Honor Principle in every aspect of our lives in Matthew 10: 40-42 “He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me.  He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward. And he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.”

Let’s examines Jesus words and substitute the word Honor everywhere receives and gives is used:

“He who honors you honors Me, and he who honors Me honors Him who sent Me. 41 He who honors a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward. And he who honors a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward. 42 And whoever honors one of these little ones with only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.”

To find the Pathway of Blessing (Rewards), we need to see:

1. Our Honor of God & His Son enables us to see the pathway of blessing (and to receive Full Reward).

  • “Show me your ways O Lord, teach me your paths”

2. There is an Authority Structure in the Kingdom of God.

  • “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth” (Matt 28:18)
  • “Then comes the end, when He delivers the kingdom to God the Father, when He puts an end to all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet.” (1 Corinthians 15:24-25)

We must honor those that Christ has ordained we honor: Christ; Prophets-Spiritual Authorities; Righteous man-Our Peers; Little Ones-Under our Care

3. When we Honor “Sent Ones” we walk the Pathway of Blessing (Full Reward)

a. When we honor those authorities over us, we receive a reward
b. When we honor those around us, we receive a reward
c. When we honor those under our care, we receive a reward.

When I was growing up I was taught to respect (honor) my parents, my teachers, elders, the Pastor, even the President. I believe we have lost the importance of honor in our country, in our society, in education, in our relationships, our marriages, and our churches.

Life is all about what we can get for ourselves. Everyone does what is right in their own eyes. As a result we have lost sight of God’s pathway of Blessing. We have lost sight of what God considers “full rewards”. We are in pursuit of pleasure, fame and fortune and that is our reward, that is what we idolize, that is what we focus on.

God wants us to focus on His Son, Jesus Christ. And Jesus says we must learn to honor Him. We must learn to honor those authorities He has placed in our lives. We must learn to honor those He sends our way. When we discover the importance of honor, and commit to living lives that honor our Savior in everything we do, we will see and enjoy walking on God’s “Pathway of Blessing”. The way will be shining and clear. We will receive God’s “Full Reward”

One word of advice, to Honor others requires humility. It requires Faith to See the Power of God behind and because of the person you Honor. For as we obey God and Honor those He has placed in our path, then He will reward us with the Pathway of Blessing!

It is not a matter of Honoring someone only if we like them or respect them or think they agree with us. It is a matter of Obeying God because He commands us to Honor the authorities He has given us and those for whom we are responsible.

  • “he who receives whomever I send receives Me” – He who honors whomever I send, honors me!

Let me close with the story of a woman who desired very much to give her husband a child, especially a male child. They lived in a culture where the children you gave your husband showed your love for him, and showed your blessing by God. This particular man had another wife, and year after year she would give him a child.

This woman was at the end of her rope. Her husband assured her that he loved her, but she did not believe him. She couldn’t stand the bragging of the other wife. She felt disgraced every time she went to the store. She could her her friends whispering about her behind her back. Finally she had enough. She could take it no more. She went to church and fell on the floor before the communion table. She cried and cried and wept and wept. She cried out to God until she was so hoarse she could not even speak anymore. So she laid their and prayed and prayed. Her lips were moving, but their was no voice. She finally told God that if He gave her a baby boy, she would give him back to the Lord, to serve Him in church all the rest of his life.

Now at this point, in walks the old preacher. He sees her laying down on the floor, her lips are moving, but no words are being spoken. He concludes she is drunk. So he yells at her and says, Woman, we don’t allow drunks in church! You need to get rid of the wine and go home until you can sober up! Then you can come to church!

Now if this woman had been raised in America, she would have stood up and started yelling at the preacher. You insensitive jerk! I have been pouring my heart out to God, I really need His touch, and you want to kick me out of church? Do you see a wine bottle? How can you be a man of God and accuse me of being drunk? What kind of a pastor are you? I’m never coming back to this church again!

If Hannah had reacted this way, she never would have received God’s Blessing, His full reward of the baby Samuel. She would have gone home a bitter woman, and she would have died thinking that God doesn’t answer prayer. In fact, she probably would have concluded there really is no God.

Instead, Hanna honored this “Pastor” who actually was Eli the High Priest. She said “No My Lord, I am a woman of sorrowful spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I was pouring out my soul before the Lord. Regard not your handmaid as a wicked woman.” (I Sam 1:15-16 AMP)

She honored this man, even though he had wrongfully accused her. Why, He was her authority, he was the High Priest. Now was Eli a hannaGreat Priest? No. in fact God said “I have warned him continually that judgment is coming for his family, because his sons are blaspheming God and he hasn’t disciplined them. So I vowed that the sins of Eli and his sons will never be forgiven. ( I Sam 3:13-14)

Hannah honored an evil, accusing Priest, because to do so was to honor God! And as a result of her humbling herself (as a handmaid) and honoring Eli, she went home and conceived a blessed baby boy, Samuel. She received her full reward. God showed her His pathway of Blessing.

  • Do you want to see God’s Pathway of Blessing?
  • Do you want God’s Full reward for your life?
  • Are you willing to humble yourself before Jesus Christ and dedicate your life to honoring Him and those He has sent into your life?

Matthew 15:8-9 (NIV) “‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.'”

    1. Have you honored Jesus in your heart by repenting of your ways, your sins, and coming to Him as your Lord and Savior.
    2. Are you willing to lay aside the rules of man and enter into a living, daily relationship of honoring Jesus and those he sends into your life?
    3. Are you willing for God to teach you His pathway of Blessing?