Somethings Are Missing

Bill Brinkworth

“And the priests brought in the ark of the covenant of the LORD unto his place, to the oracle of the house, into the most holy place, even under the wings of the cherubims: 8 For the cherubims spread forth their wings over the place of the ark, and the cherubims covered the ark and the staves thereof above. … 10 There was nothing in the ark save the two tables which Moses put therein at Horeb, when the LORD made a covenant with the children of Israel, when they came out of Egypt.” II Chronicles 5:7-10

After worshipping God from the tent tabernacle Moses had built while Israel lived in the wilderness, King David had a desire to build a new, permanent place for God.  Because of David’s past, God would not let him construct it, but He would let David’s son, Solomon, have it built.

After the ornate and beautiful temple was completed, King Solomon moved in many of the objects that were needed for worship.  One of the most prized and important was the ark.  The ark and its “Mercy Seat” lid were where God sat.

When originally placed in the wilderness tabernacle, the ark contained reminders of what God had done for Israel.  Inside the golden chest was originally the ten commandments that God had Moses inscribe. A pot containing miraculously provided mannawas also there along with Aaron’s budding rod that God had used to prove who He was.

Because of Israel’s sin, several times they lost control of the Ark to the enemy.  Although God’s people eventually got the Ark back, some of the reminders of God’s miraculous interventions for Israel that were in the chest were missing.

When the Ark of the covenant finally made it to the temple Solomon had constructed, it was missing two of those memories.  The manna and Aaron’s rod were gone. All that remained inside it was the copy of the Ten Commandments.

So many Christians start similarly. After they are saved from eternal punishment for their sins, God begins to fill their life with new, precious proofs and reminders of His goodness to them.  They have their lives filled with promises they found in God’s Word. Many answers to prayer and proofs that God heard and cared enough for them led them to a richer, fuller life were encouraging memories.  They were “new creatures” (II Cor. 5:17) just as God promised He would make of them when they would trust and follow His commandments.

However, missteps, mistakes, and sin often take away the remembrances of what God had done for many.  One treasured memory after another is forgotten and lost as the child of God falls further from obedience to God’s commandments.  Other worldly things become more important than obeying and serving the Lord. Soon little remains of the encouraging, presence of God they once experienced and were joyful over.  Their joy has been robbed by less important “priorities.”

It is not long until little remains of what they remember God had done for them.  They remember some of the Word of God, but they do not care anymore for what God offers them. If they had an “ark” like Israel, it too would be empty of many reminders of His goodness to them.

Many have lost “treasures” and opportunities the Lord had for them because of backsliding and sin. However, if they are saved, they are still a vessel God wishes to trust and use. We are still children of God, and with a sorrow for what we have done, and a repentant heart willing to again be obedient and serve the Lord we can still be a holy vessel God desires of us.  God will give us second, third, … chances.

God can still use us. However, scars from our sins may keep us from being what God originally had planned for us.  What we once had may be lost and never will be replaced. God may give us a second chance, but one’s life may never be what it was originally.  Realize what God has done for you and never let those memories and gifts be taken away.

 “You are free to choose, but you are not free from the consequences of your choice.”
— Author Unknown

This article was featured in The Bible View #687.

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