Participants: Terry Shelton
Series Code: FC
Program Code: FC000332
00:29 Hello and welcome to another edition of Faith Chapel.
00:34 My name is Terry Shelton.
00:35 And I'm gonna bring you a message
00:37 today that is in entitled witch altar.
00:40 I like to ask you to bow with me just for a moment
00:42 as we invite the Holy Spirit to be with us.
00:45 Heavenly Father, we just thank you Lord
00:48 for giving us life today and we are about
00:52 to open and study your word now Lord.
00:54 And we know that your word has a message
00:56 for us and lessons for us to learn.
00:59 I just pray father that you would open our eyes
01:02 and our ears to receive your word with
01:04 gladness in Jesus name Amen.
01:07 Witch altar, you probably think what is
01:12 that mean, witch altar, I would like
01:14 to look today at two kings of the Old Testament.
01:18 The first king we are going to look at
01:20 is named Jeroboam, King Jeroboam.
01:23 Please look at first Kings Chapter 12,
01:27 First Kings Chapter 12 and beginning
01:29 with verse 26 we are going to read several
01:32 scriptures in a row.
01:37 And Jeroboam said in his heart,
01:39 "Now the kingdom may return to the house
01:42 of David: If these people go up to offer
01:46 sacrifices in the house of the Lord at Jerusalem,
01:50 then the heart of this people will turn back
01:52 to their Lord, Rehoboam King of Judah,
01:56 and they will kill me and go back to
01:57 Rehoboam King of Judah."
01:59 Therefore the king asked advice,
02:01 made two calves of gold, and said to the
02:05 people, "It is too much for you to
02:07 go up to Jerusalem. Here are your gods,
02:10 O Israel, which brought you up from the
02:12 land of Egypt!" And he set up one in Bethel,
02:16 and the other he put in Dan.
02:19 Now this thing became a sin, for the people went
02:23 to worship before the one as far as Dan.
02:26 He made shrines on the high places,
02:30 and made priests from every class of people,
02:33 who were not of the sons of Levi.
02:35 Jeroboam ordained a feast on the 15 day
02:38 of the 8th month, like the feast that was in Judah,
02:41 and offered sacrifices on the altar.
02:44 So he did at Bethel, sacrificing
02:46 to the calves that he had made.
02:48 And at Bethel he installed the priests
02:51 of the high places which he had made.
02:53 So he made offerings on the altar which
02:55 he had made at Bethel on the 15 day of the
02:58 8th month, in the month which he had devised
03:01 in his own heart. And he ordained a feast
03:05 for the children of Israel, and offered
03:06 sacrifices on the altar and burned incense.
03:11 What was Jeroboam trying to accomplish
03:14 here. Well he was worried, he was worried that
03:16 if the people were to travel this long distance back
03:20 to Jerusalem to offer sacrifice that they would
03:24 just decide may be to just stay there
03:26 and next thing you know his kingdom would
03:29 fall apart. So, what did he do
03:32 Jeroboam plunged the entire nation of Israel
03:36 into national apostasy. Blatant idol worship
03:41 you think how can something like this be,
03:44 how can, how can a man even a king
03:48 do something like this institute a national form
03:51 of worship. Different then what God has
03:54 specified for they were worshiping two
03:57 golden calves, two false images, two false Gods.
04:03 I'm gonna look today at this thing we call idolatry.
04:09 Now, what is idolatry,
04:12 I looked up the word idolatry
04:13 and I found two definitions, the first is the worship
04:17 of a physical object as a God.
04:20 These people were practicing idolatry.
04:25 They were bow and down to worship, worshiping these
04:28 calves, these golden calves, as if they were the
04:31 God who had brought them out of land of Egypt.
04:35 Well you know something like this just
04:38 God just couldn't let it go.
04:40 God could not just sweep this little thing
04:43 under the rug. So we continue to read
04:47 in First Kings now chapter 13 verses 1 to 3.
04:52 And behold, a man of God went from Judah to
04:56 Bethel by the word of the Lord, and Jeroboam
05:00 stood by the altar to burn incense.
05:02 Then he cried out against the altar
05:05 by the word of the Lord, and said,
05:07 "O altar, altar! Thus says the Lord:
05:10 'Behold, a child, Josiah by name,
05:14 shall be born to the house of David;
05:16 and on you he shall sacrifice the priests of
05:20 the high places who burn incense on you
05:22 and men's bones shall be burned on you."
05:26 And he gave a sign the same day, saying,
05:28 "This is the sign which the Lord has spoken:
05:33 Surely the altar shall split apart,
05:35 and the ashes on it shall be poured out."
05:40 Here was Jeroboam sitting so proud over this
05:43 national apostasy, this natural form of worship
05:47 that he had setup but on come, on the scene
05:50 comes a man of God, a prophet when I told his
05:53 name just a man of God and all of a sudden
05:58 he pronounces a curse on Jeroboam.
06:02 And he prophesize the coming of one named
06:05 Josiah a king who would destroy the false
06:10 altars made to the heathen God's.
06:12 Oh! As you could imagine Jeroboam weren't too happy
06:17 about that this is something that he had done.
06:19 He had built it up and he didn't want anyone
06:21 speaking against it. He didn't want anyone to
06:24 say this is not the will of God.
06:27 How do Jeroboam respond we continue on with verse 4.
06:31 And he came to pass when King Jeroboam heard
06:34 the saying of the man of God, who cried out
06:38 against the altar in Bethel, that he stretched out
06:40 his hand from the altar, saying, "Arrest him!"
06:44 Then his hand, which he stretched out toward him,
06:47 withered, so that he could not pull it back to himself.
06:51 The altar also was split apart, and the ashes
06:54 poured out from the altar, according to the sign
06:57 which the man of God had given by
06:59 the word of the Lord. Then the king answered and
07:02 said to the man of God, "Please entreat the
07:06 favor of the Lord your God, and pray for me,
07:09 that my hand may be restored to me."
07:12 So the man of God entreated the Lord, and the
07:14 king's hand was restored to him,
07:15 and became as before. See Jeroboam
07:20 decided that he was going to silence his man of God,
07:23 he was gonna stand for such blasphemy against himself,
07:26 he was gonna sin for this type of talk.
07:29 So, he decided to take the man of God into custody.
07:35 However Jeroboam received an instant judgment
07:38 from God. Instant judgment, the thing with his
07:43 hand; withered hand and of course God and
07:46 his mercy when the man of God entreated and prayed
07:49 for him; the man of God prayed for him
07:54 and Jeroboam was restored.
07:56 Well, you would think; you would think that
07:59 something like this might cause Jeroboam to
08:02 maybe have a change of heart, maybe to think
08:06 about this path that he was headed down.
08:09 This path that he was leading God's children down
08:14 a path to destruction. Did Jeroboam change his ways,
08:19 no. For in verse 33 we read that, After this event
08:24 Jeroboam did not turn from his evil way, but
08:26 again he made priests from every class of
08:28 the people for the high places; whoever wished,
08:33 he consecrated him, and he became one of the
08:36 priests of the high places. And this thing was
08:38 the sin of the house of Jeroboam, so as to
08:40 exterminate and destroy it from the face of the earth.
08:44 Did Jeroboam change his ways?
08:45 No. He did not, he was unwilling,
08:48 he was unwilling to bend to the will of God.
08:51 This form of worship that he had set up,
08:54 he considered it of at most importance.
08:56 And he was not willing even to listen to the man
08:59 God who had pronounced such a judgment.
09:04 Now we skip ahead about 300 years
09:07 and sure enough just as was prophesized
09:11 a king by the name of Josiah came on the scene.
09:15 Lets look at that in Second Kings Chapter 22,
09:19 Second Kings Chapter 22, beginning at verse 1
09:25 it says, Josiah was 8 years old when he became
09:28 king and he reigned 31 years in Jerusalem.
09:32 His mother's name was Jedidah the daughter of
09:35 Adaiah of Bozkath. And he did what was right
09:39 in the sight of the Lord, and walked in all
09:42 the ways of his father David; he did not
09:45 turn aside to the right hand or to the left.
09:50 Josiah you see was a faithful servant of God
09:53 and a faithful king to his people.
09:55 Now think back with me in your mind
09:59 what was Josiah famous for, what is
10:03 Josiah known for in scripture. Perhaps our
10:07 children have learned it in Sabbath school class.
10:10 Josiah was the king who had a burden for the
10:14 temple to see the temple rebuilt.
10:17 It was falling apart, it looked disgraceful
10:20 and so he gathered together the treasury.
10:23 With the treasury he said I want to rebuild
10:25 the temple to make it good and strong again.
10:32 We continue that as we find that Josiah
10:38 commissioned the rebuilding of the temple
10:41 and one day something happened.
10:43 Some other guys have been working down
10:45 in the basement may be and they found
10:47 something. Let's look at that
10:50 Second Kings 22 and verse 8. Then Hilkiah
10:53 the high priest said to Shaphan the scribe,
10:57 "I have found the Book of the Law
10:59 in the house of the Lord."
11:02 And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, and he
11:04 read it. So Shaphan the scribe went to the king,
11:07 bringing the king word, saying,
11:09 "Your servants have gathered the money
11:11 that was found in the house, and had delivered
11:13 it into the hand of those who do the work,
11:16 who oversee the house of the Lord."
11:17 Then Shaphan the scribe showed the king, saying,
11:19 "Hilkiah the priest has given me a book."
11:23 And Shaphan read it before the king. Now it happen
11:28 when the king heard the words of the book of the law
11:31 that he tore his clothes. What do you think
11:37 possibly Josiah was thinking, can you imagine
11:42 the king sitting there and he is sitting maybe
11:44 on his throne and the scribe comes to him and
11:47 says we found a book, the book of the law,
11:50 one of the books of Moses. We want to read it to you
11:53 king. The king Josiah sits and he listens with great
11:59 intent, all of a sudden maybe you see a tear
12:05 begin to roll down his cheek. Maybe he begins
12:10 to squirm in his seat a little bit. The things
12:16 that they were reading were not pleasant things.
12:18 They were judgment that God had pronounced
12:21 upon his people because they had loss side
12:25 of him because they had disobeyed time
12:29 and time and time again. What was Josiah's response,
12:34 did he take the words lightly? No he rent his
12:38 clothes, it made him sad friends. However
12:43 at that point he kind of made a little resolve in his mind.
12:46 See the king discerned in his volume a treasure
12:49 of knowledge, a powerful alloy in the work of reform
12:53 he is so much desired to see wrath in his land.
12:56 He resolved to walk in the light of its councils
12:59 and also to do all in his power to acquaint his
13:02 people with his teachings and to lead them
13:05 if possible to cultivate reverence and love
13:08 for the law of heaven. Well, he wanted to
13:11 know are the things in this book, are they
13:15 really going to happen. Is that really going
13:17 to happen the destruction coming upon
13:21 God's people is it really going to be as it says.
13:26 So, the first thing he did was he sent his man
13:28 to go find a prophetess by the name of Hulda.
13:30 She was known to have a relationship with God
13:34 and she spoke for God from time to time.
13:36 And he said to find out were these things really
13:40 going to happen, were the things going to happen
13:43 to his people was there anyway out of it.
13:47 We read her response in verse 15, it says,
13:53 Then she said to them, "Thus says the Lord God of Israel,
13:55 'Tell the man who sent you to Me,
13:57 "Thus says the Lord: 'Behold, I will bring
14:01 calamity on this place and on its inhabitants
14:05 all the words of the book which the king of Judah
14:08 has read because they have forsaken Me and burned
14:11 incense to other Gods, that they might provoke Me
14:13 to anger with all the works of their hands.
14:15 Therefore My wrath shall be aroused against
14:18 this place and shall not be quenched.
14:20 "But as for the king of Judah,
14:24 who sent you to inquire of the Lord,
14:26 in this manner you shall speak to him,
14:29 'Thus says the Lord God of Israel:
14:30 "Concerning the words which you have heard
14:32 because your heart was tender, and you humbled
14:36 yourself before the Lord when you heard what I
14:38 spoke against this place and against its inhabitants,
14:40 that they would become a desolation and a curse,
14:43 and you tore your clothes and you wept
14:45 before Me, I also have heard you,"
14:50 says the Lord. Surely, therefore, I will
14:53 gather you to your fathers, and you shall be
14:56 gathered to your grave in peace; and your eyes
15:00 shall not see all the calamity which I will bring
15:02 on this place." So they brought back word
15:05 to the king. This prophetess she confirmed
15:10 all that the Lord had spoken would come to
15:14 pass. There was no way around it, no getting out
15:17 of it, it was going to happen. However because of
15:22 his dedication to God it would not happen
15:25 in the lifetime of Josiah and his kingdom would
15:28 see much peace. I guess it must have been
15:33 a blessing for Josiah to hear this that he wouldn't
15:37 have to see the destruction of his people.
15:41 So, what did he do, what did Josiah do,
15:44 did he just sit back and enjoy life
15:47 and decide let things go as they were.
15:49 No, if you read the enter book of Second
15:53 Kings Chapter 23 you will find that Josiah
15:56 went on a holy quest to destroy all the heathen
16:00 worship places. All the false altars, the false God's,
16:04 false things. In fact it says that, he went throughout
16:11 the land, knocking down altars and burning everything
16:15 that he could. In verses 14 and 15 we find that
16:19 he actually did what was prophesized 300 years ago,
16:24 he broken pieces of the sacred pillars and cut down
16:27 the wooden images, and even destroyed the
16:29 high place that Jeroboam had setup.
16:31 He fulfilled this prophecy that had been foretold
16:35 300 years ago. I wanna look at this story if we
16:40 wrap it up in a nutshell a little bit.
16:41 How do this story go, first of all we find that
16:44 when Josiah read the word of God that he felt
16:48 his own guilt and his own shame and ashamed of
16:50 his people and he brought him to his knees.
16:53 It should be the same with us friends.
16:56 When we read this word, this word will point out
17:01 our failures and where we have let God down,
17:05 if we are not living in accordance with his will
17:09 then this word should bring us to our knees.
17:12 Should point out where we have failed God.
17:14 Well after hearing the word of God
17:19 from the prophetess, he resolved in his heart
17:23 to make a change for his people. He decided
17:27 that things weren't going to continue on as they
17:30 were that the people were going to continue to
17:32 worship these false God. He was going to send his
17:34 people throughout the land and even go himself
17:36 and destroy these false idols. Destroy this form
17:42 of national apostasy. His chief concern
17:47 was this idolatry that was being practice
17:50 by his people and he did this why,
17:53 because of conviction. Conviction that reading
17:57 the word of God had brought to him.
18:01 Have you ever been convicted of some
18:02 practice in your life, has the Holy Spirit ever come
18:07 to you and said you need to let this go.
18:10 You need to do away with this practice in your life.
18:13 What was your response? Did you cover away and
18:16 said no I must have this, I must hang on to it or did
18:20 you say, yes God, I give it to you, I give it to you to
18:24 do with what you will. How did you respond?
18:30 Is it possible that God's people today might still
18:34 be practicing some form of idolatry?
18:38 You see brother how can that be, how can that be
18:40 we don't bow down to golden calves anymore,
18:42 no that's true, we do not, but it's a possibly is a
18:46 possible that we could be practicing idolatry in a
18:49 different form today. I would like to look at
18:52 our second definition of idolatry.
18:55 Our second definition of idolatry says this,
18:59 immoderate attachment or devotion
19:02 to something or someone. Immoderate attachment
19:07 or devotion to something or someone.
19:11 What are you attached to today friend.
19:14 I have a paragraph I would like to read to you,
19:17 it's a bit long but we're gonna get through it
19:19 because I think there is some important; an
19:22 important message here that we need to hear today.
19:25 It's from a little article call the Home Missionary
19:27 it's dated December 1st 1894. The sad thing in
19:33 our churches today, is that Jesus is
19:36 misrepresented by in the character of those who
19:38 profess to be his followers. Many claim to believe in
19:43 and love Jesus, while they do neither. They advocate
19:48 the law of God, but are transgressors
19:51 of its precepts. The first four commandments
19:54 require supreme love to God. Parents, children,
19:57 wife, husband, houses, lands, or any other earthly
20:02 treasures whether of friends or property are not
20:05 to be loyal loved selfishly and thus become an idol
20:10 to divert the mind, the time, the service, from God.
20:15 He that loves and serves mammon, cannot love
20:18 and serve God supremely. When friends and
20:21 relations are loved with inordinate affection,
20:23 they are talking the place in the heart, where God
20:26 should be. "Ye, therefore, beloved, seeing ye know
20:29 these things before, beware lest ye also being
20:32 led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your
20:34 own steadfastness." Love not the world, neither the
20:37 things that are in the world. If any man love
20:39 the world, the love of the father is not in him. "
20:43 Know ye not that the friendship of the world is
20:45 enmity with God? Whosever therefore will
20:47 be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."
20:51 Here idolatry is plainly revealed, as existing in
20:55 those who claim to worship God.
20:58 The pure, refined ennobling love is buried
21:01 up by the love of carnal things. This is the true
21:05 witness represents as a fearful loss inexperience
21:09 and character building the loss of the first love."
21:12 Remember therefore from whence thou are fallen,
21:14 and repent and do the first works; or else I will come
21:17 unto thee quickly, and will remove thy
21:19 candlestick out of his place except thou repent."
21:21 The true Witness sends forth this warning.
21:24 Mercy and the love of God are the
21:26 attributes of his throne. While claming to be the
21:28 subjects of the kingdom of God, and yet refusing
21:31 to be converted from their selfish love, their stern,
21:35 iron will, their own perverse ways, many are
21:39 constantly bearing a false testimony of Jesus Christ.
21:44 You see today I'm wondering if there are
21:48 other forms of idolatry that might be grabbing
21:53 a hold of us. You see the Satan wants to, he wants
21:57 to throw anything at you that he can that will keep
22:01 you from spending time with God, things that he
22:05 can throw at you that will keep you from doing the
22:08 work of God, things that will keep you from
22:12 spending time in Bible study or in prayer, things
22:15 that will keep you from attending services at
22:18 church, from attending things like prayer meeting
22:21 and morning worship service, things that will
22:24 keep you from spending time with God and may
22:28 be witnessing and sharing, things that will
22:31 keep you from doing the will of God.
22:36 You know A.C. Nielsen reports that the average
22:40 American watches more than 4 hours of television
22:44 everyday. This is the average American okay.
22:48 In a 65 year lifespan that's about 9 years of TV
22:53 watching. In the year 2001 U.S. consumers
22:57 spent a record $19 billions in home movie
23:01 rentals and sales. Now, I'm I saying the TV is bad
23:06 no of course not, if you are watching this program
23:08 you probably watching TV possibly on the Three
23:11 Angels Broadcasting Network. Now I'm familiar with
23:15 those who lead out at Three Angels
23:17 Broadcasting Network. And I think that they
23:20 would never tell you that you should put this book
23:22 down and watch 3ABN. You believe that, I don't
23:26 believe that you would ever hear them say just
23:27 put this book down and watch 3ABN, no.
23:29 Those who lead out in this ministry would tell
23:32 you study this book. However, how many
23:35 hours in a week's time do we bow down at the altar
23:39 of the television instead of spending time in
23:42 studying God's word. A pole taken in 2005
23:48 shows that 35 percent of American adults log on to
23:52 the internet at least once each day.
23:56 What's on the internet can be a
23:57 blessing or it can a curse. Now am I saying the
24:01 internet is bad? Of course not there are ways of
24:03 reaching people with the gospel that possibly the
24:06 internet is the only thing they have.
24:08 These third world countries, where they are
24:10 able to turn their computer on and receive
24:12 the three angels messages, receive the
24:15 good news of the gospel, right there on their
24:17 computer that's wonderful and I'm not trying to
24:20 discount that, but if we spend too much time
24:24 sitting at the computer, instead of time in prayer
24:28 are we bowing down at the altar of the computer
24:31 instead of spending time alone in prayer with God?
24:38 I read a study that said 30 percent of adults in North
24:42 America suffer from compulsive overeating.
24:47 How many times have we bowed down the altar of
24:49 the kitchen table instead of maybe denying our
24:53 bellies a little more sort of food, so that may be
24:55 we might have a clear mind and be able to
24:58 discern the Holy Spirit speaking to us.
25:02 How many times have we done that?
25:05 Have we ever neglected the church service.
25:09 Have we ever neglected the Bible study group,
25:12 have we ever neglected the prayer meeting
25:14 service because we wanna spend time with
25:16 friends or family. Friends, I'm not saying there
25:20 is anything wrong spending time with
25:22 friends and family, but don't neglect the worship
25:25 service, don't neglect the prayer service,
25:27 don't neglect the Bible study service in order to
25:30 just glad to have fun with friends and family.
25:33 These things not ought to be.
25:37 I recently was listening to 3ABN radio and I was
25:41 listening to a sermon by Pastor David Asscherick
25:44 and Pastor Asscherick made this point that there
25:48 was a time in U.S., I guess he is talking
25:52 about the United States probably the world.
25:54 There was a time before Christian television; there
25:57 was a time before Christian radio, there was
26:00 a time before the internet, where the gospel is being
26:03 preached that God's people actually spent time
26:07 studying their Bibles. Has that time come and gone
26:12 or we contend to just pop in a good Christian video
26:15 and let it take the place of studying the word for
26:19 yourself or we contend to just listen to his sermon
26:22 on the internet instead of going into our knees and
26:25 spending time with God in prayer or we contend
26:30 to go and sit down at the kitchen table and feed our
26:33 stomachs and then later on find out that there was
26:37 no time for God. There was no time to spend
26:40 in prayer; there was no time to spend in possibly
26:44 fasting and seeking God's counsel. I'm not saying
26:50 there is anything wrong with any of these items.
26:53 But, my question today is who comes first in your life.
26:58 Which altar do you bow down to at a regular,
27:01 at regular times, at a constant basis?
27:05 Who is the top priority in your life? Where is your
27:11 devotion, where is your time mostly spent?
27:16 Satan loves to have us, he throws so many things at
27:18 us that keep us busy all the time. And the next
27:21 thing you know the day is gone and we have not
27:23 spent anytime in prayer. We have not spent
27:26 anytime in Bible study. We are not spent anytime
27:29 in witnessing. We have not spent anytime in quiet
27:34 devotional time. Friend today I would hope that
27:39 as you get up each morning that you would
27:41 bow down at the altar of the God of heaven instead
27:44 of the altar of so many things that come at us
27:47 from one side of the other.
27:49 Bow down to the altar of Jesus today and know
27:52 that he longs to save you in his kingdom.