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Costly lapse    

To: All Pastors, Preachers, Leaders of Christian Institutions, Evangelists, Youth Leaders, Women leaders, Sunday Class teachers, Camp Organizers and to be everybody serving God .

Leviticus 10:1”Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took their respective firepans, and after putting fire in them, placed incense on it and offered strange fire before the LORD, which He had not commanded them.”
 Pulwama attack: A suicide bomber, rammed his SUV  van packed with explosives into a CRPF bus on the Srinagar-Jammu highway in Pulwama district in which 44 CRPF jawans were killed and 70 injured in terror attack in J&K.  The nation was astounded and there was mourning in every house in India.  I read an article and one particular line captured me which I write here:” The fight against terrorism can never succeed without holding people responsible for costly lapses!” Observe the words ‘COSTLY LAPSES’, my entire message will be built on these few words…..We in India got to answer questions like, ‘why we wake up only after great loss?’ Why is the manhole kept open until the death of a citizen?  Why do we get shocked about rape now because ‘rape scene’ had taken a prime place in movies decades back and people wanted a ‘dance, fight, comedy and a rape scene’, this was voluntarily thrust because of the demand of the public? Why do we cry now after allowing the crime to grow gigantically? How could the SUV van coolly come on the Jammu-Kashmir highway?  The bomber was carrying 350 kg of explosives – how? Costly lapses that took away the lives of our precious jawans should be seriously reviewed!

Let me come back to the scripture that we have taken for meditation today, this is no lollipop message, this is serious, as I kept reading the entire book of Exodus and then walked into Leviticus and then came to Leviticus 10, the death of  Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, kind of jolted me, so I set about deeply meditating and I share my thoughts here:

Questions asked: Why did God kill Nadab and Abihu for just this one act of offering strange fire?  Normally people who compromise and take the things of God casually are the ones who ask such questions – people who strictly adhere to rules are looked upon as ‘fanatics’.  Listen!  

•    Priests stand accountable for their actions:  Nadab and Abihu are no ordinary believers but young priests who were personally ordained by God, read this: Exodus 28: Garments of the Priests 1"Then bring near to yourself Aaron your brother, and his sons with him, from among the sons of Israel, to minister as priest to Me--Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar, Aaron's sons. 2 "You shall make holy garments for Aaron your brother, for glory and for beauty.” We find the words “Consecrate Aaron and his sons…Aaron and his sons’ enormous times, while God was preparing Aaron and his sons.   This wasn’t all, from here we read the elaborate preparations that were made for the ordination of Aaron and his sons; the sons were partakers of the anointing, they had share in the responsibility.  Anybody listening? Jonah was thrown into the sea for disobeying because he was no ordinary man but God’s mouthpiece, in other words a ‘Prophet’.  We take great fancy in adding prefix to our names and great titles but didn’t you know every prime position comes with a tag of ‘accountability’?

•    These two eldest sons of Aaron (and nephews of Moses) were among those priveleged to see God (Exodus 24:9-11). “Then Moses went up with Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel, 10 and they saw the God of Israel; and under His feet there appeared to be a pavement of sapphire, as clear as the sky itself.”

Look at that!  These guys (Nadab and Abihu) had personally experienced God in a mighty way.

•    TIME: Everything was decided by God and they could not walk as and when they wished, read the instructions, Leviticus 16:2 The LORD said to Moses: "Tell your brother Aaron that he shall not enter at any time into the holy place inside the veil, before the mercy seat which is on the ark, or he will die; for I will appear in the cloud over the mercy seat.” He is a Holy God, and a sovereign Lord, who demands obedience!

•    Well, Leviticus 9 brings us to the climax of all the elaborate preparations of priesthood of Aaron and his sons, God Himself visits them:

Leviticus 9:24”Then fire came out from before the LORD and consumed the burnt offering and the portions of fat on the altar; and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces.”

Now, after all the above divine experiences (ooh and ahhs) , when Nadab and Abihu disrespected God and treated Him shabbily in the Holy place, they were killed immediately.  God demands complete obedience as opposed to the bare minimum to “get by.”  In fact, they got to all be grateful, faithful, respectful for God showed up, but these two guys got puffed up and behaved arrogantly.  This was no ordinary mistake, but a costly lapse! Shrugging off responsibility cannot be ignored!  Now look at the reaction of Moses, he was calm and composed – no wailing, screaming – he was on duty.  I must write the words of Moses after such a terrible death:

Leviticus 10:3”Then Moses said to Aaron, "It is what the LORD spoke, saying, 'By those who come near Me I will be treated as holy, And before all the people I will be honored.'" So Aaron, therefore, kept silent.”

Moses did not question God, had no doubts about the severe judgment of God, but warned his brother Aaron quoting the words of God.  We must also keep  one thing in mind, our God is a righteous God.  Period.

Today, there is too much preaching about grace, super grace that people have forgotten that He is also a Consuming fire! Beware!  Those who have surrendered their lives to serve God should always remember that we are accountable for all our actions!  With all the ample avenues and golden opportunities we have today to read His Word, hear, attend plethora of seminars and crusades, the literatures that are available, free downloads of Christian material – DESPITE  all this if we STILL CONTINUE TO DISOBEY and behave carelessly then judgment is reserved for us!
Don’t cherry-pick Bible verses to justify your mistakes – grow in the knowledge of God.

Sis Bala Samson


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