WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
NOVEMBER 09, 2022
TOPIC: LET NOBODY CHANGE GOD’S INSTRUCTIONS TO YOU
BY T. O. BANSO
“He said to him, ‘I too am a prophet as you are, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the LORD, saying, ‘Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water’ (He was lying to him.)” (1 Kings 13:18 New King James Version).
Voix Populi, Vox Dei. This Latin phrase means “The voice of the people is the voice of God.” But whoever coined the phrase or proverb lied! It is a lie that whatever the people say is what God says. People don’t always say what God says. Many times, what people say is diametrically opposed to what God says.
If God gives you an instruction, don’t let anyone claiming to be speaking for God give you a contrary instruction. Don’t listen to anyone who wants to change the instructions God has given you. If God has truly given you an instruction, He is a God of order; He will tell you directly if He wants to change it. If you believe that God who tells you directly to do something will send another person to you not to do it again when you are not deaf to hear Him, you may become a victim of people’s deception. Many people have suffered from the lies of people they considered more spiritual than they were. They falsely claimed that God said something when He didn’t send them.
Be very careful. If God gave you an instruction directly and wants to change it, He will tell you directly. God doesn’t want you to be confused about whether or not the change of instructions is from Him. The old prophet in 1 Kings 13 lied and misled the man of God from Judah by changing God’s instructions to him.
King Jeroboam invited the man of God, who came to Bethel, to come with him home to refresh himself and promised to reward him. But the man of God replied, “If you were to give me half your house, I would not go in with you; nor would I eat bread nor drink water in this place. For so it was commanded me by the word of the LORD, saying, ‘You shall not eat bread, nor drink water, nor return by the same way you came’” (1 Kings 13:8-9 New King James Version).
When the sons of the old prophet in Bethel got home, they informed him about the works that the man of God had done that day in Bethel and the words he had spoken to the king. The old prophet went after the man of God having been told the way he went. He met him sitting under an oak and, after confirming with him that he was the man of God from Judah, invited him to come home to eat bread. Again, the man of God said, “And he said, ‘I cannot return with you nor go in with you; neither can I eat bread nor drink water with you in this place. For I have been told by the word of the LORD, ‘You shall not eat bread nor drink water there, nor return by going the way you came’” (verses 16-17 New King James Version).
What was the reply of the old prophet? “He said to him, ‘I too am a prophet as you are, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the LORD, saying, ‘Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water’ (He was lying to him)” (Verse 18 New King James Version). Was the voice of this old prophet the voice of God? The man of God said he was told by the word of the LORD the instruction he was acting on but the old prophet said an angel spoke to him by the word of the LORD!
It was the case of an angel contradicting or cancelling the word of God to the man of God from Judah not to eat bread or drink or return by going the way he came. Note that the old prophet didn’t say an angel of the Lord spoke to him. He said an angel spoke to him by the word of the LORD. If any angel spoke to him, certainly not an angel of light, for Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. (2 Corinthians 11:14). Could it be that the old prophet was deceived by Satan pretending to be an angel of light? The old prophet lied as indicated in parenthesis in the verse.
The man of God from Judah believed the old prophet probably because he respected his age and use of the sentiment “I too am a prophet as you are.” Or probably the man of God was so tired and hungry, sitting under an oak, that he couldn’t detect that the old prophet was lying. Be very careful. Don’t be deceived by such sentiments as “I am also a Christian” or “I am also a servant of God.” If God didn’t send anyone to tell you to do what you’re doing, He is not likely going to do so if He wants you to stop. He knows how He told you at first.
The old prophet deceived the man of God because he thought the old prophet’s voice was the voice of God! He went with him home, ate, and drank. “Now it happened, as they sat at the table, that the word of the LORD came to the prophet who had brought him back; and he cried out to the man of God who came from Judah, saying, “Thus says the LORD: ‘Because you have disobeyed the word of the LORD, and have not kept the commandment which the LORD your God commanded you, ‘but you came back, ate bread, and drank water in the place of which the LORD said to you, ‘Eat no bread and drink no water,’ your corpse shall not come to the tomb of your fathers’” (1 Kings 13:20-22 New King James Version).
Did you see that? The same old prophet who lied to deceive him brought the prophecy of God’s judgment. Was he conscious that he had lied previously? As the man of God was going after eating and drinking, a lion met him on the road and killed him. His corpse was thrown on the road, and the donkey he was riding stood by it. The lion also stood by the corpse. That was a strange scene.
When the old prophet was told what happened to the man of God from Bethel, he said, “It is the man of God who was disobedient to the word of the LORD. Therefore the LORD has delivered him to the lion, which has torn him and killed him, according to the word of the LORD which He spoke to him” (verse 26 New King James Version). What an insensitive comment! He didn’t say that he deceived the man of God to disobey the word of the LORD. Be careful. Don’t listen to anyone who tells you to act contrary to the instructions God has given you. If God wants to change His instructions, He won’t send anyone that He didn’t send to you at first.
See what this old prophet did when he got to where the corpse of the man of God from Judah was: “And the prophet took up the corpse of the man of God, laid it on the donkey, and brought it back. So the old prophet came to the city to mourn, and to bury him. Then he laid the corpse in his own tomb; and they mourned over him, saying, ‘Alas, my brother!’ So it was, after he had buried him, that he spoke to his sons, saying, ‘When I am dead, then bury me in the tomb where the man of God is buried; lay my bones beside his bones For the saying which he cried out by the word of the LORD against the altar in Bethel, and against all the shrines on the high places which are in the cities of Samaria, will surely come to pass” (verses 29-32 New King James Version).
Note that the old prophet called the man of God from Judah his brother. What a brother! He told his son to bury him in the tomb where the man of God was buried. He also confirmed that the prophecy of the man of God against the altar in Bethel, and all the shrines on the high places in the cities of Samaria, would be fulfilled. Let nobody change God’s instructions to you. They will blame you later and not say they deceived you.
In 2 Samuel 7, the Prophet Nathan endorsed David’s desire to build a house for God. But in the night, God told Nathan that David was not the one to build it but his offspring. God sent back the same prophet to David. Nathan went to deliver the word of God, thus cancelling his earlier approval. Therefore, David was not confused.
Also, when Hezekiah was sick and near death, Isaiah the prophet went to tell him the word of the LORD to set his house in order, for he would die, and not live (2 Kings 20:1; Isaiah 38:1). Hezekiah prayed to God and wept bitterly. God heard his cry and wanted him to live for more years. Therefore, He sent back to him the same prophet (Isaiah) to tell him He would heal him and add to his days fifteen more years (2 Kings 20:4-6).
We also see this pattern of God in His communication with Joseph, the husband of Mary. The angel of the Lord didn’t tell him to flee with the young child (Jesus) and Mary to Egypt and then send another person to give a contrary instruction (Matthew 2:13). Also, when it was time to leave Egypt, the angel of the Lord spoke directly to Joseph and not through another person who was not initially told to inform Joseph to go to Egypt with Jesus and Mary (Matthew 2:19-23).
Be careful! Don’t be slow to hear or deaf to the voice of God. Don’t let anyone change the instructions God has given you by falsely claiming that an angel or God told them. Don’t respect people’s spiritual credentials and disobey God.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Holy Spirit, help me to obey God’s instructions to me and not listen to those who may want to deceive me and change His instructions. I shall not be slow to hear or deaf to the voice of God in Jesus’ name. I shall not confuse the voice of a man with the voice of God. I shall not fall for the deception of those pretending to be speaking for God. Father, deliver those, who have, because of respect for people’s spiritual credentials, violated Your instructions to them.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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