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Sacrificial Obedience
Death of a Son

When *good* feels *bad*

Sacrificial Obedience

“I’ll take DANIEL for 200 please.”

“This English writer is best known for his novel about a shipwrecked sailor named Robinson Crusoe.”

“Who is Daniel DeFoe?”

“Yes. And that moves you into second place with $6,300.”

“DANIEL again for 400.”

“In the Biblical book of Daniel, King Nebuchadnezzar punished those who refused to worship his image of gold by throwing them in here.”

“What is the lions’ den?”

“No, I’m sorry. Anyone else?” (Ding, ding) “It was the fiery furnace in Daniel, chapter 3.”

“JEOPARDY” according to the dictionary means, “danger.” I thought about this as I was reading about Daniel’s three friends who were tossed into the fiery furnace.

When Christians usually talk about this story, we often focus on the miraculous deliverance that occurred. But the three colleagues of Daniel had no idea what would happen when they refused to bow down to the golden image created by Nebuchadnezzar. They told him: “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and He will rescue us from your hand, O king. But even if He does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up” (Daniel 3:17-18).

Totally amazing! Did they believe that God could deliver them? Yes. Were they sure that He would save them from death in the furnace? No. They had decided to obey Him regardless of the outcome: “Even if God doesn’t rescue and deliver us.”

Okay, reality check: Do I have that spirit of obedience or do I want God to guarantee my safety and prosperity if I stand true to Him? Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego placed themselves in God’s hands and left the outcome to Him. That’s the kind of spiritual courage that inspires us to remain true to Jesus—rescue or not.

But watch this: Just because you choose to obey God doesn’t mean that you will be kept from jeopardy. You may have to go into the furnace of fire BECAUSE of your obedience to the Lord Jesus. How does that make you feel? You see, obeying God without expecting anything in return other than the act of bringing glory to Him is the highest form of obedience. If you obey God and expect something from it that will personally benefit you, then your obedience is motivated from a selfish perspective. Often times God will ask you to obey Him for no other reason than because as King He said so.

Are you ready for that kind of obedience? If so, it is the highest expression of love that one can give to the Lord.
 

Death of a Son

A Palestinian Mother who sent her son to commit a suicide attack explains her motives. Listen carefully to her words. It will provide you a depth of amazement as to the stronghold Satan is using to cast his spell in the name of God.

On October 14, 2002, the Hamas Website published an interview with a Palestinian mother who sent her son to carry out a suicide attack against Israel. Extracts from that interview are as follows...

The mother is proud of the support and encouragement she gave her son in carrying out his attack. She is proud of his death and hopes to serve as an example to other Palestinian mothers and sons.

"I was happy at his birth and at his death"

Mahmud Alabad was born in the Shati refugee camp on April 30, 1979. "When I gave birth to Mahmud, I was so happy when I saw him, and when I said goodbye to him when he was on his way to the next world, I was happy. May Allah be praised for the fate that granted this suicide attacker his life and his death."

Mahmud arrived at home one day and said: "I was accepted, mother."

"I asked him where."

He replied: "To the ranks of the brigades. From now on," he said, "I am to be counted among the warriors."

He told me that the brigades wanted my approval for him to be a suicide bomber (Istishahadi). I sent a letter with him, which he passed to the leader, Salah Shehade [head of the terrorist faction of the Hamas; Shehade was killed in the IDF Airforce attack on Gaza in July 2002]. Shehade said that the operation that Mahmud would take part in would be very successful, because his mother is pleased by his actions.

"I agreed that he become a suicide bomber to encourage other mothers"

"I realized that my son's martyrdom was an act of Allah, and it became for me as a source of pride."

"[My son] asked me to come with him to film his farewell video. At first I refused to be filmed with him for fear of how it would appear, but his
commanders told me that it would be considered a powerful encouragement for [other] women and youth and would strengthen the heart of our nation. On that basis, I agreed to be filmed to show our loyalty to Allah."

"I prayed that my son be killed in action, so he could rewarded with the
[72] virgins in Heaven"

He answered: "I went to the place and I saw the bride and her family;
tomorrow we go there to pay the dowry" [bride is the Hamas code word for terror attack; this is based on the belief that a man who falls in the
course of Jihad ascends to Heaven and marries 72 virgins].

From the first time that I said goodbye, I asked him not to be afraid [in
fighting] against the Jews, as they are cowards, that he prepare his weapons well before embarking, that he kill [as many] as he can and leave none alive. And when he left for his operation, his face was radiant as if he were meeting the girls of heaven right then and there. I wished him luck and that he enter heaven and marry the girls as soon as possible.

"I was happy when they told me that my son had died"

"In the middle of the night, two masked men knocked on the door [of our
house]. As soon as I opened the door they said: Allah has richly rewarded you. Instantly I knew that Mahmud had been granted the death he wanted. I told my husband that Mahmud had been slain in the glorious attack. I also informed Mahmud's brother and felt happiness mixed with sorrow. I informed his sisters that I had known in advance of his attack and that I was even filmed in a video beforehand. They were astonished at first, but they quickly accepted my actions."

"The fact that my son killed Jews makes me happy"

"I was very happy when I heard that he [Mahmud] killed Jews in the attack. When a warrior of Jihad follows Allah's path to kill Jews, [it is the act of Jihad] that gives him strength. Even if he does not kill any Jews, it is an honorable act because he dies the death of a martyr."

"We Muslims have the strongest maternal instinct."

"We want heaven and endeavor to please Allah. Allah has commanded us to fight the Jihad in Allah's way-with our possessions and our souls. We answer Allah's call, and this gives us pride."

Comments: Notice how the reward of marrying 72 virgins in heaven is greater than seeing God Himself? And notice how it is impossible to commit a lawless deed on earth by sleeping with 72 virgins, but now that lawless deed becomes possible in heaven? What is said to be a sin against God now becomes all right in heaven?

Thank God daily for His grace and truth, and that you see and know it! And pray that God will break the strongholds of Satan over such families as represented here.

 

When *good* feels *bad*

God causes all things to work together for good to those who love Him
Romans. 8:28

Life has its ups and downs. Each of us bears a scar or two regarding something that was said or has happened to us in the past. We struggle trying to find meaning, but usually all we find for the moment is pain and apprehension.

But God has a plan. It is a wonderful plan, though when you look at it all you see is a web of disarray. God has chosen to work His plan according to His timetable, not ours. We are to rest on the promise that He works all things together for good to those who love Him.

Sometimes when reading Romans 8.28, we need a little help to explain its multiplicity of applications. When we read or hear the same thing said but in a different way using different words, then our brain snatches onto something it can identify with.

In the panel below this one I have listed some priceless sayings sent to me by a Christian brother. Read them carefully and slowly. Some may not sit right with you at first, but after a second or third reading, you may smile and nod your head in agreement.

Be grateful for those scars that you bear; be thankful for the condition you're in; and be hopeful for the dream God will one day release through you when His plan of having all things working together for good finds its fruition in your life.

Much Grace,

Rich
  • No man or woman is worth your tears, and the one who is, won't make you cry.
  • Just because someone doesn't love you the way you want them to, doesn't mean they don't love you with all they have.
  • A true friend is someone who reaches for your hand and touches your heart.
  • The worst way to miss someone is to be sitting right beside them knowing you can't have them.
  • Never frown, even when you are sad, because you never know who is falling in love with your smile.
  • To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world.
  • Don't waste your time on anyone who isn't willing to waste their time on you.
  • Maybe God wants you to meet a few wrong people before meeting the right one, so that when you finally meet the person, you will know how to be grateful.
  • Don't cry because it is over. Smile because it happened.
  • There's always going to be people that hurt you, so what you have to do is keep on trusting and just be more careful about who you trust next time around.
  • Make yourself a better person and know who you are before you try and know someone else and expect them to know you.
  • Don't try so hard. The best things come when you least expect them.

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