“You are only coming through in waves
Your lips move, but I can’t hear what you’re saying
I have become comfortably NUMB.”
The words of this song could easily be sung by many of us. Father, you are only coming through in waves. Your lips are moving Abba, but I can’t hear what you’re saying because I’m consumed with other things. I am at ease. Complacent. Comfortably numb.
Many times something will grab us for a moment, but often it doesn’t penetrate or bring warning because we have become emotionless.
Most of you probably saw this headline:
“Guadalajara, Mexico was hit with six feet of ice.”
Not six inches, six feet. We say things like, “one day we’ll all be six feet under, but seriously, we will. This headline/picture caught my attention and reminded me of tribulation.
“Now Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of water came upon the earth.” (Genesis 7:6).
Our clock is ticking like Noah’s. 6,000 years and then the Messiah comes to usher in the 1,000-year reign of the Messianic Age. His Kingdom Come!
Matthew 24:37-39 (NASB).
For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, AND THEY DID NOT UNDERSTAND until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be.
Life was going on as usual during Noah’s day. People were numb to the violence and wickedness that had consumed the earth. They were unaware that the very one who created them regretted that He had made man. Oh, my heart!
The ice in the photo above reminded me of judgment that often is described using hail. Mexico’s second-largest city, Guadalajara, has an Arabic name meaning ‘valley of stones and also, a valley of streams.’
In Isaiah, chapter 57, he talks about the righteous and the wicked. As for the wicked, it says, “Your gods are the smooth stones in the valleys. You worship them. . .” “Among the smooth stones of the stream is your portion; they are your lot:” 57:6, NLT, KJV.
We make idols out of many things. We even have a television show called American Idol. Sports stars and movie stars can become idols.
But watching a show isn’t the problem; making idols in our hearts is the problem. They bring no fulfillment and no joy. They leave one feeling empty. Sometimes we can give our phones more attention than our loved ones and our pets. Sometimes we become consumed with our hair, wrinkle removers, abs of steel, and dressing up this outward shell, that we forget about our INWARD PARTS. The outer man is perishing. Skin will hang, and wrinkles will multiply, but our spirit man is for eternity. What if our hearts had a window that exposed to the world our true condition? A sliding door that when opened, revealed dirty black sludge or a clean white chamber. Would we be washing in His Word more? I think so.
The typical image of an idol is a wooden stone or clay statue of a god, but when we look deeper, we see that idol worship is those things in our lives that we place SUPREME importance on. We spend more thoughts, time, and money on them–often at the cost of neglecting the very ones we love. An older game called World of War craft (WOW) made Widow of War Craft T-shirts because so many wives left their husbands due to them gaming 24/7. There are many forms of addiction that become worship. You don’t have to be on your knees bowing to a god of wood to have other gods before HIM. Idols cannot see or hear. Are we like them?
“When you become the father of children and children’s children and have remained long in the land, and act corruptly, and make an idol in the form of anything, and do that which is evil in the sight of the LORD your God so as to provoke Him to anger, I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that you will surely perish quickly from the land where you are going over the Jordan to possess it. You shall not live long on it, but will be utterly destroyed. “The LORD will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the LORD drives you. “There you will serve gods, the work of man’s hands, wood, and stone, which neither see nor hear nor eat nor smell. 29“But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul” (Deuteronomy. 4:25-29).
Sometimes we don’t even realize we are addicted to building our own kingdoms because a root of idolatry has been birthed in our hearts. We can place people, and family members above our Father and yet Yeshua said, “You cannot be my disciple, unless you love me more than you love your father and mother, your wife and children, and your brothers and sisters. You cannot follow me unless you love me more than you love your own life.” (Luke 14:26).
OUR OWN LIFE.
That’s an invitation to drink a cup.
He goes on to compare the people to what Isaiah said:
In their case, the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says,
‘YOU WILL KEEP ON HEARING, BUT WILL NOT UNDERSTAND;
YOU WILL KEEP ON SEEING, BUT WILL NOT PERCEIVE;
There are many forms of addiction that become worship. You don’t have to be on your knees bowing to a god of wood to have other gods before HIM.
Isn’t it interesting that throughout scripture, when we read about these idols, we see that WE can be just like THEM!
The idols cannot see or hear.
Yeshua, after telling them a parable about a sower who went out to sow seeds answers his disciples: “And the disciples came and said to Him, “Why do You speak to them in parables?” Jesus answered them, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted. “For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him. “Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.” (Matthew 13:10-13).
As time nears closer to the coming of Messiah, we see idolatry growing like an epidemic. Many people look at heroin addicts with disgust, but what needles are we jabbing into our own veins to get a fix? That fix should be coming from the Father of Heavens Glory. Otherwise, our hearts have taken on idols that cannot heal, cannot soothe, cannot redeem nor give us peace; only a relationship with Him can do that.
I want to show you a few statistics. Yes, let’s weigh some things. Here is a list of people who make much money. They may be good people who help those in need, but let’s look at what we have made it.
Soccer player, Lionel Messi, pay $127 Million, 92 million salary, and 35 million in endorsements.
LeBron James, basketball player pay is 89 million, salary 36 million and 53 million in endorsements.
Here are a few more players:
Kevin Durant $65.4 M $30.4 M $35 M Basketball
Tiger Woods $63.9 M $9.9 M $54 M Golf
DeMarcus Lawrence $46.9 M $46.8 M $150 K Football
What did this form of idolatry look like in say the 1950’s? 1970’S, 1990’s?
1948 $65,000 Joe DiMaggio (NY AL)
1970 $135,000 Willie Mays (SF NL)
1971 $167,000 Carl Yastrzemski (Bos AL)
1980 $1,000,000 Nolan Ryan (Hou NL)
1990 $3,200,000 Robin Yount (Mil AL)
1992 $6,100,000 Bobby Bonilla (NY NL)
Now, we have reached a gross amount of money due to what people want.
Some of the top ten paid actors don’t even make as much money as the athletes.
Akshay Kumar — $40.5 million. Will Smith — $42 million. Jackie Chan — $45.5 million. Chris Hemsworth — $64.5 million. Robert Downey Jr. — $81 million. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson — $124 million. George Clooney — $239 million.
The word gymnasium comes from the Greek word gymnos, which means naked.
Are we walking around naked without our clothing thinking we are dressed in the finest garments? The Torah/ Commandments are said to be clothing. “You shall have no other gods before Me.“
What are we trading eternity for? A bowl of red stuff?
“Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see.” (Revelation 3:17-18, NASB).
Babylon will fall, and great will be its fall. The arenas will crumble. Silver and gold will be thrown in the streets. The man-made church systems will collapse.
The pride of man will be humbled And the loftiness of men will be abased; And the LORD alone will be exalted in that day, the idols will completely vanish. 19Men will go into caves of the rocks And into holes of the ground Before the terror of the LORD And the splendor of His majesty, When He arises to make the earth tremble. 20In that day men will cast away to the moles and the bats Their idols of silver and their idols of gold, Which they made for themselves to worship, 21In order to go into the caverns of the rocks and the clefts of the cliffs Before the terror of the LORD and the splendor of His majesty, When He arises to make the earth tremble. 22Stop regarding man, whose breath of life is in his nostrils; For why should he be esteemed?” (Isaiah 2:17-22, NASB).
“Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! 3 For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the [b]abundance of her luxury.” Revelation 18:2-3.
How many idols do we have that I haven’t even mentioned yet? I think we have let things creep in until we do not even know the state of our condition.
We are comfortably numb.
Six feet of ice falling from the heavens should have us thinking about many things. We know who controls the earth and even the weather patterns. He causes it to rain on the just and the unjust. He shut the sky for three years, so there was no rain in the days of King Ahab. He sent a flood. Now, we see ice–
We see hail used as judgment.
“The LORD said to Joshua, “Do not fear them, for I have given them into your hands; not one of them shall stand before you.” they fled from before Israel, while they were at the descent of Beth-horon, the LORD threw large stones from heaven on them as far as Azekah, and they died; there were more who died from the hailstones than those whom the sons of Israel killed with the sword.” (Joshua 10:8, 11).
(Exodus 9:18) Behold, at this time tomorrow I will rain down the worst hail that has ever fallen on Egypt, from the day it was founded until now.
(Ezekiel 13:13) Therefore this is what the Lord GOD says: ‘In My wrath, I will release a windstorm, and in My anger torrents of rain and hail will fall with destructive fury.
(Revelation 11:19) Then the temple of God in heaven was opened, and the ark of His covenant appeared in His temple. And there were flashes of lightning, and rumblings, and peals of thunder, and an earthquake, and a great hailstorm.
(Revelation 16:20-21). “And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. And huge hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, came down from heaven upon men; and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, because its plague was extremely severe.”
Yeshua warns his disciples of strange happening that will befall the earth before his return. We are warned that it will be so bad men will faint! We need to ponder this more often because one day the heavens will roll up like a scroll. How will we be found at His coming? An old prophet once said that we need to stamp eternity on our eyeballs.
“Know this first of all, that in the last day’s mockers will come with their mocking, following after their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation.” For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. But by His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.” (2 Peter 3:3-7).
There will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves, 26men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 27“Then they will see THE SON OF MAN COMING IN A CLOUD with power and great glory. 28“But when these things begin to take place, straighten up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” Luke 21:25-28.
If our redemption is drawing near, shouldn’t we be drawing near to him? Making sure we have oil to spare and our wicks trimmed–are garments clean and free from wrinkles?
“Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps lit. 36“Be like men who are waiting for their master when he returns from the wedding feast, so that they may immediately open the door to him when he comes and knocks. 37“Blessed are those slaves whom the master will find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them. 38“Whether he comes in the second watch, or even in the third, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves. “But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have allowed his house to be broken into. ” Luke 12:35-39.
Even if we know the season, and His Calendar, and are obedient, we can still be luke-warm. And we can have idols in our hearts that we bow to daily in our numbness. May we wake-up and be a people who are prepared.