Faithlife Sermons

The Most Wanted

Ezekiel   •  Sermon  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 1 view

My Father and Saturday Night

As a child my father ended his Saturday night in the same way. After football would go off he would watch Cops, bad boys bad boys “watcha” gonna do! Then he would watch a show that I still do not watch by myself called America’s Most Wanted. It was typically these people that committed these heinous crimes and for some reason law enforcement could not find them. It was always interesting how many people were caught at the expense of people watching this show. The most peculiar piece of this show was the host who dedicated his life to this show was the father of a son who was the victim of an unsolved murder. These people were America’s Most Wanted, they could not fly out of the country, police officers and FBI agents were exhausting every resource along with community help to find these people before they committed another act of violence that caused someone to grieve a loved on.
Here we are in Ezekiel 25 in which the Ammonites, Moabites, and the Edomites become God’s Most Wanted. To be the enemy of the Lord is a terrible place to be. Understand that God will always deal with His children as a Father should, but God is always going to take care of our enemies, we do not have to do it and we shouldn’t be like our enemies and rejoice in the plunder of others.

Enemies Beware

One thing we need to understand that struggle, consequence and trials are a part of the life of the Children of God. There are times when God has to get our attention when we have been sub par in our purpose, disobedient to his commands. The difference is the Jews had sinned against God’s love and law, but the gentile nations had sinned against God’s people. Although we sin, we are still God’s children. God is never going to defend our sins, but we should never let our sin discourage us to the point that we cannot depend on God. On the other hand God will defend His people and not allow the enemy to go unpunished.
There is a difference between chastisement and God punishing our enemies or those that harm us.
Hebrews 12:5 “And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him;”.
The enemy (Satan) wants us to believe in the fairy tale version of God. The peace, blessings, and love and joy of God. Nonetheless if we truly believe that God is a father, a father chastises His children, a father corrects His children, a father disciplines His children.
1 Peter 4:12-13 “Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.”
We have to begin to think along the lines of what Jesus sacrificed and suffered to provide us with Salvation. God allowing Jesus to go through persecution, abuse, and crucifixion was not a reflection of the cruelty of God but the power of God. God has the power to chastise His Children, but the side of the fence you do not want to be on is the punishment of God for mistreating His children or disobedience.
Ezekiel 25:3-5 “Say to the Ammonites, ‘Hear the word of the Lord God! Thus says the Lord God: “Because you said, ‘Aha!’ against My sanctuary when it was profaned, and against the land of Israel when it was desolate, and against the house of Judah when they went into captivity, indeed, therefore, I will deliver you as a possession to the men of the East, and they shall set their encampments among you and make their dwellings among you; they shall eat your fruit, and they shall drink your milk. And I will make Rabbah a stable for camels and Ammon a resting place for flocks. Then you shall know that I am the Lord.””
It wasn’t just about the profane nature of the Ammonites. They truly kicked Israel while they were down! Here’s where we have have to be mindful, this is where God is trying to make His point. We are here to be sanctified and when we act like the world, we can’t get mad when the world treats us as such.
When we betray God, when we lie to God, when we idolize material things more than the creator we have no right to be upset when God allows us to be the victim of the world’s lies and betrayal, the backstabbing and mistreatment. Especially when we have done God the same way.
God is not putting punishment in the way of our enemies because He’s being unfair the idea is acknowledgement and obedience. God reduces their Capital to stable for camels, and Ammon a resting place for flocks. Here’s the punishment understand that Ammon was fastened as the connector along the king’s highway that made them an economical success that connected Egypt and Mesopotamia.
The reason why God does this is so that we understand and know that God is God! “Then you shall know that I am the Lord”

Retribution vs. Remedial

What God does to the enemies is retribution for their mistreatment of His children. They profaned the sanctuary, they clapped and danced and cheered with glee at the destruction of God’s people. God’s punishment or retribution is never for the good of sinners or for Christians to rejoice in the punishment or suffering of others. It’s to bring back a sense of honor to God’s law and the vindication of His sovereign nature.
Believer or not, I need to you to understand who is in power so you have no excuse during the time of judgement.
In the case of the believer God’s children are not punished for our sins, Jesus took the punishment but we are held accountable. So when you read about the famine and God destroying people due their that idol worship, oppression of their own people and mistreatment of one another know that the chastisement was to be an example to those to know that God is still God! His efforts toward us are remedial in nature meaning given or intended as a remedy or cure. When we disobey we are sick with sin, and in effort to reach righteousness the remedy is chastisement.
The goal of chastisement is to rebuke, humble and subdue. Understand that Ammon was not ignorant of God, these are the descendants of Lot. Just like today you may not be a Christian but the familiarity with who God is should usher a certain amount of respect for his house of worship and His people. Because they made a mockery of God and His people God delivers them into the hands of a greater enemy.

God Handles Our Enemy Accordingly

Understand that we don’t have to fight these battles. The best way to fight in the presence of mockery is to be obedient.
Mark 15:27-30 “With Him they also crucified two robbers, one on His right and the other on His left. So the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “And He was numbered with the transgressors.” And those who passed by blasphemed Him, wagging their heads and saying, “Aha! You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself, and come down from the cross!””
Even in the midst of mockery, Jesus remained obedient. Understand sometimes the greatest punishment is acknowledgement that God is All Powerful! The humility that is attached to admitting that you were wrong in your outlook is going to require a group of comforting people to handle with care. When someone comes to Jesus sometimes they are not crying out of shame, sometimes they are truly in tears because it is truly heartbreaking to know that I’ve had the answers this long yet I’ve struggled to believe out of my stubbornness. See Ammon thought that there was something wrong with Israel because they were suffering but suffering is never an indicator of disobedience of forsaking from God, sometimes God allows it so we will get back on track!
We have to ask ourselves the question what is our attitude toward people who are being punished or chastised by God? Are we praying even for our enemies? Are we asking God to provide them with the encouragement to seek His will and surrender to Him. Or are we laughing or mocking them because we believe they deserve it! Truth be told we all deserve it. Jesus didn’t have to be on that cross, it could have and should have been one of us, but even on the cross Jesus still provided a spirit of love! So no matter your circumstance or what someone has done to you, will you sit back and make a mockery of them or will you trust that God has the power to restore even the worst of us if we truly acknowledge that He is LORD!
Related Media
Related Sermons