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Monday, July 21 2014

1 Chronicles 21: Why Is Evil Attracted To Good?

"Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David"

King David (see Israel In History and Prophecy: King David and The Prophecy Of King David's Messianic Throne) was a righteous man who sought to obey the LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ - see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God). In the present world as it is, that righteous heart made David a prime target for Satan's toxic influence. Good is repulsed by evil, but evil is attracted to good with the sole malicious intent to corrupt it. King David's military census, for prideful and personal reasons, is one of a number of times that Satan influenced David to make a mistake.

"21:1 And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel. 21:2 And David said to Joab and to the rulers of the people, Go, number Israel from Beersheba even to Dan; and bring the number of them to me, that I may know it.

21:3 And Joab answered, The LORD make his people an hundred times so many more as they be: but, my lord the king, are they not all my lord's servants? why then doth my lord require this thing? why will he be a cause of trespass to Israel?

21:4 Nevertheless the king's word prevailed against Joab. Wherefore Joab departed, and went throughout all Israel, and came to Jerusalem. 21:5 And Joab gave the sum of the number of the people unto David. And all they of Israel were a thousand thousand and an hundred thousand men that drew sword: and Judah was four hundred threescore and ten thousand men that drew sword.

21:6 But Levi and Benjamin counted he not among them: for the king's word was abominable to Joab." (1 Chronicles 21:1-6 KJV)

Jerusalem
King Saul, David's predecessor, was a man of excuses and blaming others for his errors - he resisted and rejected correction (see Saul's Impeachment). In stark contrast, David, although also making serious mistakes from time to time, always repented when he did wrong. It made the difference between a wrath of correction and a wrath of destruction.

"21:7 And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel.

21:8 And David said unto God, I have sinned greatly, because I have done this thing: but now, I beseech thee, do away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

21:9 And the LORD spake unto Gad, David's seer, saying, 21:10 Go and tell David, saying, Thus saith the LORD, I offer thee three things: choose thee one of them, that I may do it unto thee.

21:11 So Gad came to David, and said unto him, Thus saith the LORD, Choose thee 21:12 Either three years' famine; or three months to be destroyed before thy foes, while that the sword of thine enemies overtaketh thee; or else three days the sword of the LORD, even the pestilence, in the land, and the angel of the LORD destroying throughout all the coasts of Israel. Now therefore advise thyself what word I shall bring again to him that sent me.

21:13 And David said unto Gad, I am in a great strait: let me fall now into the hand of the LORD; for very great are his mercies: but let me not fall into the hand of man." (1 Chronicles 21:7-13 KJV)

The incident produced a property purchase, the results of which are still seen in the news today - the Temple Mount (see A Biography Of Abraham: Abrahamic Religions).

Ornan

"21:14 So the LORD sent pestilence upon Israel: and there fell of Israel seventy thousand men. 21:15 And God sent an angel unto Jerusalem to destroy it: and as he was destroying, the LORD beheld, and he repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed, It is enough, stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD stood by the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite.

21:16 And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the LORD stand between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. Then David and the elders of Israel, who were clothed in sackcloth, fell upon their faces.

21:17 And David said unto God, Is it not I that commanded the people to be numbered? even I it is that have sinned and done evil indeed; but as for these sheep, what have they done? let thine hand, I pray thee, O LORD my God, be on me, and on my father's house; but not on thy people, that they should be plagued.

21:18 Then the angel of the LORD commanded Gad to say to David, that David should go up, and set up an altar unto the LORD in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite. 21:19 And David went up at the saying of Gad, which he spake in the name of the LORD.

21:20 And Ornan turned back, and saw the angel; and his four sons with him hid themselves. Now Ornan was threshing wheat. 21:21 And as David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David, and went out of the threshingfloor, and bowed himself to David with his face to the ground.

21:22 Then David said to Ornan, Grant me the place of this threshingfloor, that I may build an altar therein unto the LORD: thou shalt grant it me for the full price: that the plague may be stayed from the people.

21:23 And Ornan said unto David, Take it to thee, and let my lord the king do that which is good in his eyes: lo, I give thee the oxen also for burnt offerings, and the threshing instruments for wood, and the wheat for the meat offering; I give it all.

21:24 And king David said to Ornan, Nay; but I will verily buy it for the full price: for I will not take that which is thine for the LORD, nor offer burnt offerings without cost.

21:25 So David gave to Ornan for the place six hundred shekels of gold by weight. 21:26 And David built there an altar unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings, and called upon the LORD; and he answered him from heaven by fire upon the altar of burnt offering.

21:27 And the LORD commanded the angel; and he put up his sword again into the sheath thereof. 21:28 At that time when David saw that the LORD had answered him in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite, then he sacrificed there. 21:29 For the tabernacle of the LORD, which Moses made in the wilderness, and the altar of the burnt offering, were at that season in the high place at Gibeon. 21:30 But David could not go before it to enquire of God: for he was afraid because of the sword of the angel of the LORD." (1 Chronicles 21:14-30 KJV)

Fact Finder: Did Abraham, centuries before David, make a sacrifice to the LORD at the place that became the Temple Mount?
See Isaac: Rising From The Ashes


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This Day In History, July 21

356 BC: The original Temple of Artemis (also known as the Temple of Diana) in Ephesus, one of the "Seven Wonders of the Ancient World" (it took 120 years to build it) was destroyed by arson. The idol-worshiping Temple was rebuilt and is recorded in the New Testament (see The Riot At Ephesus).

Temple of Artemis 285: Diocletian appointed Maximian as Caesar and co-ruler of the Roman Empire (see also A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars).

365: An earthquake at Crete caused a tsunami in the Mediterranean Sea that struck Alexandria, Egypt. It killed over 5,000 people in the city and 50,000 more in the surrounding area.

1403: Henry IV defeated rebel forces at the Battle of Shrewsbury in England.

1542: In an increasing fight against Protestantism, Pope Paul III set up an "Inquisition."

1588: The first of 3 battles of the English fleet against the Spanish Armada (warships and thousands of European marines) that had been sent by the Papacy to invade England.

1667: The Peace of Breda ended the Second Anglo-Dutch War (1664-1667) and ceded Dutch New Amsterdam (today known as New York City) to the English.

1711: Russia and Turkey signed the Treaty of Pruth, ending the year-long Russo-Turkish War of 1711.

1773: Clement XIV issued his Dominus ac redemptor noster which officially dissolved the so-called "Society of Jesus" (the Jesuits).

1774: The Russo-Turkish War of 1768-1774 ended with the signing of the Treaty of Kuchuk-Kainarji between Russia and the Ottoman Empire (listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire).

1798: The "Battle of the Pyramids" took place in Egypt. The Mameluke army attempted to block Napoleon's march on Cairo but were repulsed and eventually driven into the Nile River, where many were drowned.

1831: Belgium gained independence from the Netherlands. Leopold of Saxe-Coburg (in Germany) was elected the first king of the Belgians.

1904: The 4,607 mile / 7,468 kilometer Trans-Siberian railway was completed after 13 years of construction.

1925: The "Scopes monkey trial" ended in Dayton, Tennessee when John Scopes was found guilty and fined $100.00 for teaching Darwin's theory of evolution in violation of a Tennessee statute enacted earlier in the year. Scopes' conviction was later overturned (listen to our Sermon Darwin's Theory of Evolution).

1954: The French signed an armistice with the Viet Minh that ended their war but divided the Vietnamese people into two artificial countries - North and South Vietnam. The result was a Vietnam civil war between the north and the south that the U.S. later involved itself in after the French withdrew from the divided Vietnam that they created. When the U.S. left in the 1970s, Vietnam was reunited to its original nation.

1969: Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin lifted off from the surface of the moon, successfully completing the first manned lunar landing (the Russians were the first to make a successful unmanned lunar landing; first, a series of intentional crash landings beginning in 1959, then a controlled landing in 1966 from which scientific instruments transmitted data and video back to earth).

1970: Construction of the Aswan High Dam in Egypt was completed after 11 years.

1983: Martial law was lifted in Poland. It had been imposed in December 1981 by the communist government in a crackdown against Solidarity labor union.

1983: The lowest temperature ever recorded occurred at Vostok Station, Antarctica: -89.2 degrees Celsius / -128 degrees Fahrenheit.

1998: Alan Shepherd died at age 74. Shepherd was the first U.S. astronaut in space (a Russian was the first human in space) and the 5th man to walk on the moon.

2011: The U.S. Space Shuttle program ended with the landing of Atlantis. U.S. astronauts now depend on Russian space launches to get into orbit or to the International Space Station.



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