4 Life Changing Questions (part four)

Am I willing to take a risk?

Judges 3:20ff, “Ehud walked over to Eglon, who was sitting alone in a cool upstairs room. And Ehud said, ‘I have a message from God for you!’ As King Eglon rose from his seat, Ehud reached w/ his left hand, pulled out the dagger strapped to his right thigh, and plunged it into the king’s belly. The dagger went so deep that the handle disappeared beneath the king’s fat. So Ehud did not pull out the dagger, and the king’s bowels emptied.”

Yes, that’s disgusting but it’s in the Bible. Literally it means, “And the dung came out.” Remember I said I’d never seen that flannel-graphed or made into a Veggie tales video. Why put that in there? Here’s why: sometimes God’s will is messy.

“I don’t think they should put that in the Bible.” You can take that up w\ith God. Let me tell you why this is so important. To the Hebrew mind, the people who were originally reading this text, they would have taken great joy and delight in the humiliation of their enemy who had humiliated them for 18 years.

One of the things that we can take great delight in as followers of Jesus is the fact that Jesus, on the cross, humiliated our enemy. Jesus shattered the power of the enemy who held the world in oppression for 1000s of years. That should be our goal, to live for Jesus so that we humiliate, in his power, the enemy. We’re not to be scared of him because J. marked him on the cross.

Judges 3:23ff, “Then Ehud went out to the porch; he shut the doors of the upper room behind him and locked them. After he had gone, the servants came and found the doors of the upper room locked. They said, ‘He must be relieving himself in the inner room of the house.’ [Why did they say that? Because they could smell it!] They waited to the point of embarrassment, but when he did not open the doors of the room, they took a key and unlocked them. There they saw their lord fallen to the floor, dead. While they waited, Ehud got away. He passed by the idols and escaped to Seirah. When he arrived there, he blew a trumpet in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites went down with him from the hills, with him leading them.”

Look at the risk Ehud took! God didn’t send Ehud an email saying, “Ehud, if you do this then you’re going to be a king, a hero, you’re going to have a great marriage, wonderful kids who make straight A’s, and 1000s of years from now people will talk abt. Ehud the left-handed dude.” No, he did not get a worry-free guarantee. In fact, I would argue Ehud probably thought he would die doing this. He didn’t know that the king wasn’t going to make a noise. He didn’t know that the weapon wasn’t going to be discovered. He didn’t know that the bodyguards were going to leave. All he knew was that God’s telling me to do this, and if I don’t do it, I’ll explode because I’m bothered AND gifted enough AND the opp. is right in front of me. Even though I don’t know what’s going to happen, I’m going to take a risk. Because I don’t want to spend the rest of my life wondering, “What would have happened if I would have done that?” He took a risk.

One of the problems we have in the church today is Christians who want to do something for Jesus that cost them nothing. “Jesus, I’ll follow you, but it better not effect my time, my dating life, my marriage, my golf game, or my money. But I’ll follow you.” Those people prayed a prayer but they didn’t make a commitment. What about you? Recklessly follow Jesus no matter what.

There are people thinking, “One person can’t make a difference.” Ehud did. Judges 3:28, “‘Follow me,’ he ordered, ‘for the LORD has given Moab, your enemy, into your hands.’ So they followed him down and, taking possession of the fords of the Jordan that led to Moab, they allowed no one to cross over. At that time they struck down about ten thousand Moabites, all vigorous and strong; not a man escaped. That day Moab was made subject to Israel, and the land had peace for 80 years.”

The land had peace for 80 years. Do you know why? One man was willing to be bothered. One man embraced the gift that God gave him. One man did not try to deny the opportunity that God placed in front of him. And 1 man was willing to take a risk & say, “God, even if I die I’m going to die serving you.”

 

So what abt. you? What bothers you? What breaks the heart of God that’s currently breaking yours? If you’re a Xtian, & nothing’s bothering you, then the prayer you need to begin praying is, “God, break my heart for what breaks yours.”

How are you gifted? If you don’t know, then begin to pray, “God show me what my gift is.” Sign up for the nxt class that comes up on that issue. Read thr. those script.s & the best way to discover them is it to get involved. Start serving somewhere. You’re not going to pray the gift up in you. You actually have to serve it out of you.

 

What opp.s are rt. in front of you? Bec. when you can answer those 1st 2 ?s then God will place all kinds of opp.s in front of you.

What risk do you need to take? God’s calling you to make a diff. Don’t underest. yourself. & please understand 1 more time, if you’re bored or if you have no life, it’s not bec. you followed J. there.

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