A new generation of Israelites grew up and they know nothing about God or what he had done for them.
We read of this happening during the time of the Judges and several other places in the old testament.
It is extremely hard for me to understand how this could happen. How can a whole generation of Israelites grow up without hearing about God and his constant faithfulness to them? They had awesome stories of God leading them and fighting for them and feeding them and freeing them. What were those parents thinking when they didn’t take the time and effort to pass those along? Now that I’m a grandparent I also wonder what the grandparents were thinking?
They obviously weren’t thinking. This passage tells us that they were all wrapped up in their false gods. They worshipped the various gods from the regions where they lived.
How could they do this? If we’re honest, we know how easy it is to get distracted from what’s good and true. Our world provides innumerable false gods that are worshipped faithfully by the crowds of people around us. These are the gods of money, success, a big house, a new car – the list goes on.
These false gods entice us to spend our time and energy on things other than worshipping, serving and loving our God.
And our children watch. They know what our priorities are by how we spend our time and money. It doesn’t matter what we say – what we do has the most influence.
We are told that the Israelite’s lack of faith aroused God’s anger. Woh. Not a good thing.
And we are told that their children lived in great distress because of the actions or, probably more accurate, the lack of actions of their parents.
None of us as parents want our children to live in great distress because of things we have done. Or not done.
If we’re not where we need to be in this area of our lives, today is the best time to start to make a change. One step at a time. We first need to get our own priorities straight – lined up with the Truth – and then we can teach our children by example.
Even when our children are adults, they are still watching our lives. We can influence them by how we choose to live, how we spend our time and our money. We can stop preaching at them – they don’t listen anyway 🙂
When our grown children see the love and peace and grace of God shining out of our lives, they will want to check it out. Because they won’t have it if their lives aren’t lined up with God.
Dear Father, help us to be good examples of fully devoted followers of Christ so that our lives along with our words show your goodness and your truth.