Saturday, May 25th, 2013
Isaiah 61 (Part 8)
Instead of your shame you shall have double honor,
And instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion.
Therefore in their land they shall possess double;
Everlasting joy shall be theirs.
Isaiah 61:7 (NKJV)
Our God goes the extra mile. When the prodigal son came walking home, His father came running toward him. His shame walk turned into a home run that still scores hearts today.
Our God gives more than we ask. When we give Him just ten percent, He gives back 'Pressed down, shaken together, and running over' (Luke 6:38); to 'Open the floodgates of Heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it' (Malachi 3:10).
God's standard is 'Exceeding abundance' (see Ephesians 3:20-21), and He applies this standard to restoration. After Job lost everything, 'The Lord blessed the latter part of Job's life more than the former part' (Job 42:12). 'Indeed the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before' (v.10).
After Israel was left in ruins as the only wake-up call His idol-worshipping people would heed, God ushered them home to great blessings: 'Return to the stronghold, you prisoners of hope. Even today I declare that I will restore double to you' (Zechariah 9:12). How does this relate to entertainment?
When Christians abandoned Hollywood, hell broke loose. Idols grew into monsters that swallowed life as we knew it--including much of God's church. Like Jonah and the whale, we lived in the belly of the beast--because media is a monster. We should have known better.
The faithful few who went willingly to this mission field with a public profession of faith experienced prejudice and ridicule--even shame. For decades, they were excluded from jobs. Therein, their success was limited. Consider them your advance guard.
Today a new generation of God's performers rises. Like David running toward Goliath, actors, models and talent for Christ run toward media. They run with faith. But instead of a giant soldier, they face a giant spider. His web binds millions to screens large and small--as enchanted eyes enter the wrong net. Once caught, it's hard to escape.
But God's favor cannot be bound. His performers are dressed for success, including the footgear of peace. It's been retrofitted with non-stick 'souls.' While gliding to their destinies, God's stars remain free from the spider's web--but it does give them a convenient means of transportation.
'The prince of the power of the air' (Ephesians 2:2) is powerless to stop them. Not only that, but they receive double honor in this land at this time. Because God has opened it to actors, models and talent for Christ.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Isaiah 61 series.