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Noah, Daniel, Job!

Noah, Daniel, Job!

God spoke to Prophet Ezekiel of His judgment upon the land that was persistently unfaithful to Him: “The word of the Lord came again to me, saying: ‘Son of man, when a land sins against Me by persistent unfaithfulness, I will stretch out My hand against it; I will cut off its supply of bread, send famine on it, and cutoff man and beast from it.  Even if these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they would deliver only themselves by their righteousness,’ says the Lord God.


‘If I cause wild beasts to pass through the land, and they empty it, and make it so desolate that no man may pass through because of the beasts, even though these three men were in it, as I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘they would deliver neither sons nor daughters; only they would be delivered, and the land would be desolate.’


‘Or if I bring a sword on that land, and say, ‘Sword, go through the land,’ and I cut off man and beast from it, even though these three men were in it, as I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘they would deliver neither sons nor daughters, but only they themselves would be delivered.’


‘Or if I send a pestilence into that land and pour out My fury on it in blood, and cut off from it man and beast, even though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, says the Lord God, ‘they would deliver neither son nor daughter; they would deliver only themselves by their righteousness’” (Ezekiel 14:12-20).


What we read above in the passage is God’s Judgment on the Persistent Unfaithfulness of the land!

Among four cycles of God’s severe judgment, Noah, Daniel, and Job were rendered powerless:

·        Judgment by Famine!

·        Judgment by the Wild Beasts!

·        Judgment by the Sword by the Enemies!

·        Judgment by Pestilence!


Noah!

God spared Noah’s family because of Noah.  Here is how it happened.


God found an upright man of integrity and blameless among a wicked generation: “Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually (all day). And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. So, the Lord said, ‘I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.’ But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. This is the genealogy of Noah. Noah was a just man, perfect (blameless or having integrity) in his generations. Noah walked (in habitual fellowship) with God” (Genesis 6:5-9).


The word Noah means “Comfort, Rest.” God was comforted to look at Noah walking in habitual fellowship with God all day while the thoughts of his generation were wicked all day.  God provided an escape from His judgment to Noah and his family of 8 – Noah, his wife, their three sons, and daughters-in-law by commanding him to build an ark with detailed specifications when the earth had not seen a drop of rain before.


The writer of the Book of Hebrews records Noah’s highest level of faith in Hebrews 11: “By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith” (Hebrews 11:7).


What was special about Noah?

·        The world was wicked, but Noah was righteous!

·        The thoughts of Noah’s generation were wicked, but Noah was blameless!

·        Noah was in constant communion, conversation (prayer) with God!

·        Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord!

·        Noah escaped judgment and so did his family!

·        Noah was consistently righteous, blameless, and in communication with God daily!


Daniel!

God spared the wise men of Babylon from the King’s wrath because Daniel intervened in prayer and took the challenge!


“For this reason (of the forgotten dream), the king was angry and very furious, and gave the command to destroy all the wise men of Babylon. So, the decree went out, and they began killing the wise men; and they sought Daniel and his companions, to kill them. Then with counsel and wisdom Daniel answered Arioch, the captain of the king’s guard, who had gone out to kill the wise men of Babylon; he answered and said to Arioch the king’s captain, ‘Why is the decree from the king so urgent (harsh)?’ Then Arioch made the decision known to Daniel” (Daniel 2:12-15).


What did Daniel do?  He joined with his Hebrew brethren and prayed to God and God revealed the King’s matter to Daniel: “So, Daniel went in and asked the king to give him time, that he might tell the king the interpretation. Then Daniel went to his house, and made the decision known to Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, his companions, that they might seek mercies from the God of heaven concerning this secret, so that Daniel and his companions might not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. Then the secret was revealed to Daniel in a night vision. So, Daniel blessed the God of heaven” (Daniel 2:16-19).


Daniel was a praying and God-fearing man.  The angel who talked to Daniel addressed him as “Daniel, a man greatly beloved!” (Daniel 10:11, 19). It was not that Daniel sought God in prayer when he was in trouble, but praying and walking with God was Daniel’s regular habit: “Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed (that he would be cast into the lions’ den), he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days” (Daniel 6:10).


We all know how God spared Daniel in the lions’ den by shutting the mouths of the lions.


What was special about Daniel?

·        Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the King’s food or drinks, Daniel 1:8!

·        With prayer, Daniel revealed the King’s dream and interpretation to King Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel 2:45.  Daniel spared the lives of the wise men of Babylon!

·        Daniel revealed the meaning of the handwriting on the wall to Belshazzar, Daniel 5:25-28!

·        Daniel was a friend to Nebuchadnezzar to interpret the King’s dream and warn him that he would be banished from his kingdom for 7 years, Daniel 4:19!

·        Daniel proved his innocence before King Darius by continuously praying and walking with God.  He was preserved in the lions’ den, Daniel 6:22!

·        Daniel was given the revelation of the times and the seasons of the “last days” (Daniel 6-12) which is used with the Book of Revelation to know the times we live in!

·        Daniel was consistent with his life, testimony, and prayer to be called, “A man greatly beloved.” Daniel was a powerful servant of God under four kings – Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar, Darius, and Cyrus!


Job!

Job too was blameless and upright in his generation: “There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned (turned away from) evil” (Job 1:1).


Job was a God-fearing and praying man when everything was going well with his life and prosperity.  He prayed for his children daily: “And (Job’s) sons would go and feast in their houses, each on his appointed day, and would send and invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them. So it was, when the days of feasting had run their course, that Job would send and sanctify (consecrate) them, and he would rise early in the morning and offer burnt offerings according to the number of them all. For Job said, ‘It may be that my sons have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus, Job did regularly” (Job 1:4-5).


Job was vehemently tested by Satan – His wealth was gone, his children perished in one day, and his health was sorely affected!  Here is the remarkable heart of Job: “Then Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped. And he said: ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.’  In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong” (Job 1:20-22). 


We know the end of the story of Job: “Now the Lord blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning; for he had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, one thousand yoke of oxen, and one thousand female donkeys. He also had seven sons and three daughters. And he called the name of the first Jemimah (“Handsome as the day”), the name of the second Keziah (“a fragrance”), and the name of the third Keren-Happuch (“The Colorful Ray”). In all the land were found no women so beautiful as the daughters of Job; and their father gave them an inheritance among their brothers.  After this Job lived one hundred and forty years and saw his children and grandchildren for four generations. So, Job died, old and full of days” (Job 42:12-17).


What was special about Job?

·        Job was blameless!

·        Job was upright!

·        Job feared God!

·        Job turned away from evil!

·        Job prayed to God in his good times!

·        Though Job lost everything, he got everything back twice as much as before.

·        Job’s suffering had a time limit proving himself faithful and consistent.  God reversed his sufferings and blessed him.


Noah, Daniel, Job!

The testimony of all three great men God mentions four times in Ezekiel 14 is as follows:

·        Their life was blameless!

·        They were upright in their generation!

·        They had a habitual fellowship with God!

·        They prayed and communicated with God always!

·        Their life was consistent with the Word of God!

·        Their generations knew of their walk with God!


That was the reason why God spared Noah’s family, spared the wise men of Babylon when Daniel prayed, and reversed all the curses Job suffered at the hand of Satan.


What Do We Learn from These Great Men?

These men were separated from the world, and so must we.  God was grieving at the generation of Noah but was comforted when He looked at Noah.  We too must bring comfort and rest to our God by our separation: “And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people.’  Therefore ‘Come out from among them and be separate,’ says the Lord. ‘Do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you. I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters,’ says the Lord Almighty” (II Corinthians 6:16-18).


These men were consistent with their prayer and walk with God! We should stop seeking God or praying to God only when we are in trouble. Prayer is not crying out to God when we are in trouble but it is our communication with God when we are healthy, prosperous, and at peace.  Check yourselves how much you are in communication with God.  The Israelites cried out to God “by the reason of their bondage” but when God delivered them with signs, wonders, and miracles, they had no foundation in God to continue believing in Him.  They despised God and even the Promised Land and God overthrew them in the wilderness.


Here is the important lesson from Ezekiel 14:12-20!  Sadly, there comes a time when those who carry us with their prayers will no longer be around or God begins to look at our condition – Our walk with God, Our consistency with God, Our prayers to God, Our uprightness with God! God repeating His pledge FOUR TIMES that He would not hear the prayers of these three powerful men tells us of the severity of the situation when that time comes!


I don’t know when that time will be, but Ezekiel 14 serves us as a stunning reminder to stop living on the fringes of God’s anointing, with one foot in the Kingdom of God and the other foot in the world but to live right – righteous, blameless, upright, and holy.


Families will be saved for their righteousness and not from the borrowed righteousness! 

There will be virgins that will be saved for their oil in the lamps and not for the oil of others (a time is coming when the oil will not be shared)!

God’s servants will be rewarded for their diligence in multiplying their talents, not those who buried them!


Let us heed the warning of Apostle Paul to Athenians: “Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead” (Acts 17:30-31).


Prayer

“Heavenly Father, I love You and adore You and bow down before You.  I thank You, Lord, for Your mercy and grace in saving me by the sacrifice of Your Beloved Son, Jesus, on the cross of Calvary.  I heed the warning of the Holy Spirit that there comes a time when You will righteously judge the world.  I pray that Your awareness will sweep my families and our communities before that time comes.  I pray for revival among Your people who have gone to sleep without being aware of the times we are living in.  We do not deserve it, but I pray You will forgive our sins and have mercy upon us by bringing a great awakening among our communities with Your sovereign move. Help us be ready, Lord, at Your coming, and with a group of people in our families and communities that we have prepared with our obedience and walk with You. Please, Lord, reveal the urgency of Your times to everyone around me so that we will respond to Your call with the urgency of Your invitation.  In the Most Precious and Wonderful Name of Jesus, I pray.  Amen!  Amen!!”

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John Jeyaseelan

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