“And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” Hebrews 6:11-12
Definition: Avoidance of physical or spiritual work.
Scripture Reading: Isaiah 56:10-12 and Ezekiel 3:16-22; 33:1-11
Idle, lazy, sluggish – all traits that translate into the last of the “7 deadly sins” that we will be studying in this series – slothfulness. The words I just put before you sound despicable in our culture, yet at the same time the actions associated with those words are common place (consider for instance the picture of the woman to the left in contrast to the picture of the woman below and the words that are used to describe her from Proverbs 31).
Diving In: After reading the scripture referenced above, answer the following questions.
In Isaiah 56:10, God tells about the state “His watchmen” in Israel. List below the characteristics listed in the Isaiah text for these “watchmen” who had let the city go to ruin.
According to Ezekiel 3:17, what is the job of a watchman appointed by God?
How serious was the job of a watchman according to Ezekiel 3:18-22? What was at stake if the waterman did not do his job?
Finish filling in the blanks which describe all of the things God called Ezekiel to do as the watchman for Israel as described in Ezekiel 33.
o Verse 2: “Son of man, _____________ to the children of your people…”
o Verse 3: “…when he _________ the sword coming upon the land…”
o Verse 3: “…if he _________ the trumpet and ________ the people…”
o Verse 7: “…therefore you shall __________ a word from My mouth and ________ them for Me”
Ezekiel 33:10&11 contains the message Ezekiel, as the watchman, was to deliver to the Israelites. Consider the ramifications of shouting out this message to nation that was no longer following God. Would the message have made Ezekiel a popular guy?
Prayer and Scripture Meditation:
Praise Jesus Christ for “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself” (Ephesians 1:7-9).
Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to, you through the scriptures in this study, ways you or people you know struggle with idleness. Additional scripture: Proverbs 31, Romans 12:11-13, and Luke 12:35-48
Take time to write down the verses that speak to you.
Pray through them while asking God to restore those areas of your life and the destruction idleness has caused in them.
Then seek God and how He is calling you to start the process of reconciliation and healing both in your life and in your heart.
I hope you enjoyed this last study and are feeling your thirst has been quenched enough to enable you to not be idle anymore about drawing the living water you need each day from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Keep on dipping into the well and you will never run dry. Tomorrow I will be back again with my ponderings and the revelations God has allowed me to see in His word. Until then, God bless.