How does a noble king respond to a senseless rebellion within the realm of his kingdom? I'm convinced this is a vital question.
Most of the monarchs in the ancient world would squash anyone who even hinted at disloyalty. Although this action would seem harsh by modern sensibilities, ancient men and women expected it.
It was widely assumed that a ruler was obligated to remove anything treasonous. Since any mutinous activity would result in a fierce unraveling, the sovereign was compelled to mete out justice for the well-being of the community,
Yet, Yahweh, the great King of heaven and earth, doesn't always enact fierce punishment in the face of insurrection. In fact, I would argue He often begins in a completely different place.
As God encounters dishonor, His initial response is the imposition of sanctions—the withdrawing favor, benefits and resources.
In the midst of a mounting rebellion, beauty is withheld. Incredible blessings, once widely distributed, are now surprisingly out of reach. Suddenly, access to His presence is lost.
Under inspiration from the Holy Spirit, the prophet Micah once declared, "Then they will cry out to the Lord, but He will not answer them; He will hide His face from them at that time, because they have wrought evil deeds" (Mic. 3:4).
Understand that the most poignant sign of God's displeasure isn't wrath or violence. It is silence.
J.D. King, director of the World Revival Network and co-pastor at World Revival Church, is writing Regeneration: Healing in the History of Christianity. King is a sought-after speaker, writer and author.
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