Summary: What will you do when your Hero of the Faith is no longer?
"BUILD YOUR OWN ALTAR"
(9) And the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh returned, and departed from the children of Israel out of Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan, to go unto the country of Gilead, to the land of their possession, whereof they were possessed, according to the word of the Lord by the hand of Moses.
(10) And when they came unto the borders of Jordan, that are in the land of Canaan, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh built there an altar by Jordan, a great altar to see to.
(11) And the children of Israel heard say, Behold, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half tribe of Manasseh have built an altar over against the land of Canaan, in the borders of Jordan, at the passage of the children of Israel.
(12) And when the children of Israel heard of it, the whole congregation of the children of Israel gathered themselves together at Shiloh, to go up to war against them.
Now turn with me to verses 23-27
(23) That we have built us an altar to turn from following the Lord, or if to offer thereon burnt offering or meat offering, or if to offer peace offerings thereon, let the Lord himself require it;
(24) And if we have not rather done it for fear of this thing, saying, In time to come your children might speak unto our children, saying, What have ye to do with the Lord God of Israel?
(25) For the Lord hath made Jordan a border between us and you, ye children of Reuben and children of Gad; ye have no part in the Lord: so shall your children make our children cease from fearing the Lord.
(26) Therefore we said, Let us now prepare to build us an altar, not for burnt offering, nor for sacrifice:
(27) But that it may be a witness between us, and you, and our generations after us, that we might do the service of the Lord before him with our burnt offerings, and with our sacrifices, and with our peace offerings; that your children may not say to our children in time to come, Ye have no part in the Lord.
Recently I was asked by one of our Sunday School teachers to fill in for her. She was to have some surgery done and was unsure if should would be able.
She is one half of the best 2-teachers that can be found anywhere. Both these ladies have helped to “grow me in the church”. From childhood I have watched the lives of both these ladies. I thought of what a wonderful example they both have been to me.
As I began to reminisce of early years of my life I thought of another pair of teachers. I thought of another pair of teachers who greatly influenced me as a child. These pair of teachers;
Once took our children’s class horseback riding
I recall them taking us to Carowinds
Once they gave of their time to take all of us kids to the beach.
I then begin to think of the great work they had done for the Lord. I remember of how they would tell me, “Jesus loves you”. These two teachers were a wonderful blessing to me.
And then I begin to think of the fact that they, are no longer here. No longer, taking time with the children. No longer, planning trips to Carowinds.
No longer, driving the children to the beach to ride the Roller Coasters. No longer, taking the kids on Horseback Rides. No longer giving of their time to the Lord. No longer, telling our children that Jesus loves them. I began to think of how they were no longer here.
They are not, helping with our toddlers. They are not, working with our children’s church. They are not, teaching our youth classes. They are not, ministering to our teens. They are no longer here. As I thought of these two individuals that influenced me so early on, and of how they eventually turned back on God, I began to think of how important it is for each of us to “build our own Altar.”
These two who once walked close to God, now no longer in church. They are divorced today. He has been disabled and can only get around by a wheel chair. He has since remarried. As far as I know, both are still in a back slidden state today.
Now, I have no reason to believe that any of our teachers would turn back on the Lord. Especially these two ladies who asked me to teach their class recently.