An Object in Motion..

(Today's post by Tim David)

1 Samuel 4:1b-22


Part of Newton’s first law of thermodynamics is…an object in motion stays in motion unless acted on by an outside force. One of my favorite academic toys is a Newton’s cradle. (the balls that crash into each other and keep swinging, until you stop them) In order for the cradle to start its motion, you need to start the reaction. There is always the first crash that then allows the predicable collisions to occur creating an entertaining series of events that still amazes me today. I guess, what I want to focus on is the predictable nature of the cradle. Should Eli have been able to see what was coming???

Seriously, this is a train wreck that was going to happen, but Eli had no clue to predictable, catastrophic end to his lineage. The first horrible decision was bringing the Ark out to the battlefield. Let’s first digest that for a moment – did God really need them to take an object to the battle field in order for Him to be with the army? The denial of God’s nature lead to the Philistines fighting harder than they had ever fought…which leads to Hophni and Phinehas losing their lives, and so on. It’s sickening to look at this (so many thousand years later) and not scream “Stop! Don’t do it. This isn’t going to end well.” Like every Georgia fan yelled when Richt made the call he did in the final seconds of the SEC championship game last year. Even if Eli and the rest of his family could hear me, would it have made any difference? No…of course not, otherwise God would have done it then. Wait, He did -reference chapter 3 of I Samuel.

What was set in motion for me to be on the track I’m on now? Events in our lives aren’t necessarily completely determined. We do have this thing called a free will…which in my case means I can “freely” choose to mess my life up. But isn’t that what we do? We think we are making the best decisions, when most of the time they are just naturally occurring events due to a decision we made that set things in motion. However, that motion can be changed by the outside force of God. I seriously don’t think Eli would have done anything different if he knew in the span of a couple of days he was going to lose the Ark, his sons, his life, and his daughter-in-law. Samuel’s life on the other was predictably moving along due to the initial decision to listen to God…same predictable manner – two different results. So, where am I at today? What do I need to change in order to avoid a train wreck?

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  • “Samuel’s life..was predictably moving along due to the initial decision to listen to God.”

    What is God saying to me right now that I might not be listening to Him about?

    I believe it is service. To flesh out what I say I believe. I do not want to be like the Priest or the Levite that pass by the wounded man, in the parable of the Good Samaritan.

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