“Do not be stiff-necked, as your ancestors were; submit to the Lord.” 2 Ch. 30:8
How long has it been since the Lord first indicated to me that something wasn’t quite right and action had to be taken to correct it? I guess it has been a while since then, yet the Lord didn’t seem to mind that much, for nothing bad has yet to happen. Perhaps it’s not such a big deal to him after all.
We are experts in making apologies for ourselves, and all things that we desire to do can always be rationalized and justified. The last line of our defense has always been the Lord is compassionate and forgiving, which is something we can always rely upon. Indeed, he will always forgive and forget, won’t he?
“Do not be stiff-necked, as your ancestors were; submit to the Lord.” If we continue to look in one direction, our necks will become stiff and frozen, rendering us unable to turn around and see what the Lord wants us to see. It’s rather difficult for a stony heart to be softened again.
The celebration of Passover had ceased for a number of years, and it gradually became a habit for people not to observe the holiday. The sacred day had quickly become a regular day when people carried on with their daily businesses, not realizing that they were committing a serious sin against God by ignoring the day when the Lord had performed a great deed in Egypt on their behalf. Not to observe the holiday was a sign that people had long forgotten what it meant to be grateful and thankful to the Lord.
What does it mean when you forget your wedding anniversary or your wife’s birthday? Obviously, she will be greatly offended, for forgetfulness of those red-letter dates, making her feel that you no longer care about the relationship that you once treasured.
To submit to the Lord is to again remember your first love for the Lord that might have been waxing cold throughout the years. It is to do the things that you used to do when your zeal for him was just kindled, and you could hardly wait to meet him in the sanctuary every Lord’s day.
When did attending worship service become such a chore and fellowshipping with God’s people turn into something so mundane and laborious? Does it break your heart when you recollect that your heart used to be filled with excitement and every fiber of your being became awakened at the hearing of hymns sung and God’s word proclaimed?
I know no other solution to this predicament except this: “Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first.” What were the things we did at first? Celebrating the Lord’s Day should be a good start.