By Roy Burner (Minister of the Gospel)
Set your house in order was a directive given to King Hezekiah who was near death; that he would die and not live. Scripture reveals: Then then Hezekiah turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the Lord, and said, Remember now, O Lord, how I have walked before you in truth, and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in your sight. And Hezekiah wept sore (or bitterly) (Isaiah 38:2-3).
Isaiah the prophet; who had delivered the message to Hezekiah of his coming fate, was told of the Lord to go and say to Hezekiah: Thus saith the Lord, the God of David your father, I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears: I will add to your days fifteen years (Isaiah 38:5). Hezekiah had his house in order and was amply rewarded!
A man of God warned Eli, the priest of Israel, for allowing his sons to continue sinning against God, and what the end result would be, if he did not set his house in order.
Later, the prophet Samuel was told of the Lord: I will do a thing in Israel, of which both the ears of every one that hears it shall tingle. In that day I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house; when I begin, I will also make an end (1 Samuel 3:11-12).
When Samuel told Eli what the Lord had spoken, he said: It is the Lord let him do what seems him good (1 Samuel 3:18). Set your house in order was no longer a consideration, seeking God's forgiveness no longer sought after, only accepting the fact of the judgment that God had pronounced against him, and his house!
Set your house in order is ignored; when there is no longer a fear of God, when sin is committed without remorse, and the ungodliness of man is openly declared with pride and arrogance.
Under such circumstances there is an inroad laid for the judgment of God to be implemented! We are seeing worldwide, a fulfillment of Scriptures as it ventures further from God, rather than drawing closer to Him. There are famines, pestilences, and horrific happenings in many lands, but little crying out to God (as that of King Hezekiah); along with a willingness to respond to a "set your house in order" command.
Joshua, the leader of Israel, in attempting to bring his people back to God, sought after a set your house in order commitment:
If it seem evil to you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom you will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood (or Euphrates), or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell: but as for me, and my house, we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:15).
Joshua wanted a decision from his people, as to whom they would give allegiance, who responded with: We will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:21)!
A call to set your house in order came in the days of the prophet Jeremiah. From the least of them even to the greatest of them every one was given to covetousness; and from the prophet (excluding Jeremiah), even to the priest, every one deals falsely (Jeremiah 6:13).
The Lord, speaking to Jeremiah, said: Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush; therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit (or punish) them they shall be cast down, saith the Lord (Jeremiah 6:15).
Stand you in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and you shall find rest for your souls. But they said we will not walk therein. Also I set watchmen over you, saying, Hearken to the sound of the trumpet. But they said, We will not hearken (Jeremiah 6:16-17).
Hear O earth: I will bring evil (or calamity) upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened to my words (God's call to set your house in order), nor to my law, but rejected it (Jeremiah 6:19). A Bible commentary noted: Moving in their own paths and following their own way was to lead them to their own destruction.
Scripture reveals: In a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honor and some to dishonor. If a man therefore purge (or cleanse) himself from these, he shall be a vessel to honor, sanctified (or set apart), and meet for the master's use, and prepared to every good work.
Flee youthful lusts; but follow (or pursue) righteousness, faith, charity (or love), peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart (2 Timothy 2:20-22). One is to purge (or walk away from) influences that are contrary to God's Word; to follow after those things which are consistent with the character of God.
There are winds of dissension blowing today that do not promote harmony but division. The direction one takes bears on the status of a nation. Scripture reveals: Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord; and the people whom he has chosen for his own inheritance (Psalm 33:12).
Many once godly nations had responded to the words: Set your house in order, then yielded over to ungodly influences that withdraw them from such a status. We have a electronic age that advances ideology that does not line up with God's Word; acting as a deterrent; rather than encouragement to walk in accordance to the Word of God. A sailing vessel controlled by the wind; is not always at an advantage towards reaching its destiny, if the wind is contrary!
Scripture reveals: The ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary (Matthew 14:24). About three miles out, the disciples of Jesus encountered great difficulty from a wind that was contrary.
We are seeing a like situation, in many lands, where many have withdrawn from the source of help that once would have been sought after; with man undertaking his own salvation in trying times. It took the power of the Lord to still the storm in the above circumstance; and it still takes the power of God today, when it is beyond man's capability to do so!
There is a gateway towards a peace of mind; but it takes the command, to set your house in order, and a willingness to do so, to enjoy the peace of mind that can only come from a heavenly Father, and His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus said: Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you: not as the world gives, give I to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid (John 14:27).
The world is in turmoil with a condition that makes many fearful and afraid. Is it not time to set your house in order; to call on the Lord, to experience peace in time of turmoil? Is it not time to put your hand in the hands of the Master (the Lord Jesus Christ); who able to still the troubled waters of your soul?
Scripture reveals: Those who are planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God (Psalm 92:13). We know that if our earthly house (or physical body) of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens (2 Chronicles 5:1).
There is a promise to the Overcomer: To him that overcomes will I (the Lord) give to him to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God (or Heaven) (Revelation 2:7). Man lost his ability to partake of such; when Adam and Eve disobeyed God, but it is promised again to the believer in Christ who holds fast to the end!
Scripture reveals: He that overcomes, the same shall be clothed in white raiment (or garments); and I (the Lord) will not blot his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels (Revelation 3:5). A Bible commentary noted: The one who has genuine faith in Christ, has the righteousness of Christ accounted to him through the redeeming blood of Christ, his name will not be blotted out of the book of life!
Set your house in order is a necessary ingredient towards the goal of a heavenly reward. There are many ungodly influences in the world that would attempt to sway one from the strait and narrow way spoken of.
Scripture reveals: Enter you in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat. Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads to life, few there be that find it (Matthew 7:13-14). Christ Himself is both the gate, and the way, and God enables men to find that gate.
A Sunday school commentary noted: A man was asked if he was given a minute to explain the Gospel to someone, how would he do so? He said he would spend the first fifty minutes concerning judgment and then the last ten minutes on the good news of salvation, because without the content of judgment one would not appreciate or even understand salvation.
Set your house in order is not a judgmental statement; but a preclude to a pathway of righteousness through Christ. Scripture reveals: Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. Be not conformed to this world; but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God (Romans 12:1-2).
One is to resist being poured into the mold of present day thinking, value systems, and conduct of this world. The righteousness of God will cause the believer to conduct himself in a godly manner, bringing credit to the label Christian, or of being Christlike! Set your house in order will be an automatic to one who lines up with God's Word!
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