The Story:Look, son, if you’re dead set on living a life of sin, then, by all means, sin boldly! Let it all hang out. Shoot the moon. Go for broke. Knock yourself out. Indulge your every whim and passion. Consume everything you get, and get as much as you can. If life is all about sowing wild oats, then sow them furiously. By now, doubtless, Rehoboam has wised-up to his father’s sarcasm. But he would have been hard-pressed to deny that this was probably what was on his mind: “Let the good times roll!” It fell to Solomon to put his plans and purpose in an eternal perspective. God doesn’t just sit around while fools and rebels squander His gifts and take advantage of others. His wrath is being poured out even now on all who are determined to follow their “under the sun” way of life to the extreme (Rom. 1.18-32).
The Structure:The judgment of God is bad news which makes the Good News of the Gospel make sense. If we fail to point out to those to whom we witness that God is judging and will judge their rejection of His truth, we’re doing them no favors. Over and over the prophet Ezekiel was told to reveal to the people of Israel all that God would do in judging them, so that, when it came to pass they would remember that He is the Lord. What can we tell the unbeliever who rejects the Gospel? He is still in his sin. The wrath of God continues on him, blinding him to truth. His sins will get worse before they get better, but he will only become more and more hardened to them. And if he continues on this course until death, he can expect to be rejected from the presence of the living God forever. And that’s a darkness that is very dark, indeed (v. 8).
Do you talk with the people to whom you bear witness about the judgment of God? What do you tell them? Is it wrong to warn people of God’s outpoured wrath and coming judgment? What would Jesus do?
Each week’s studies in our Scriptorium column are available in a free PDF form, suitable for personal or group use. For this week’s study, “Think of the Days Ahead: Ecclesiastes 11,” simply click here.
T. M. Moore
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved