Authority and regard

“A son honors his father, and a servant his master. If I am a father, then where is my honor? And if I am a master, where is the respect due me? Says The Lord of Hosts, to you, priests, who despise my name. You say, ‘How have we despised your name?”

Malachi 1:6

In the usual course of human interactions and relationships, there are those who deserve and should have our regard and respect. Our father and mother should have the place of honour, because they are our Mother and Father, and because of what they have done for us. If we work for a boss or a manager, we must follow their directions and carry out our job as they wish us to. God is looking into the hearts of His people and watching the deeds of their hands, and saying to them that He is not experiencing honour or obedience from them. 

God is the Eternal Father and the ultimate Master. He is the Father of all humankind, and the Master who rules over all things and determines their lives. Even though He is the ultimate authority and has total power, He is not receiving any respect from His creatures, even the ones who claim to believe in Him and worship Him. The priests of God’s temple are acting similarly. They do their own thing and have no respect for the will of God. They do things as they see fit. They think they are pleasing God, but no effort is made to understand His Word or find out about God’s character and purposes. 

God points these things out to these priests, and they reply with rudeness, and a terse tone of voice. How dare God challenge them. What does He mean about despising his name? 

These unbelieving servants are also unprofitable servants. They have no knowledge of God or what He is like. They somehow seem to have got the idea that they are the top of the tree, and God is somehow serving them. Why is He being so demanding? He should be grateful for what we do. So we see the notions in the unbelieving heart. We get everything wrong and think that God is here for our comfort, and the paltry worship we give and the money we give to Him- He should be grateful for it.

The fact that God is our authority and our master who we serve, has been cut out from our perception of Him. We have no fear of God and therefore we lack wisdom. We don’t understand that His demands are valid and we must obey Him. In this world of choice, we think we can love God or ignore Him. We have lost the concept that our God is a consuming fire. We never seem to think about the consequences of ignoring God, and disrespecting His Son, Jesus, or insulting the Holy Spirit. The idea of ultimate and everlasting punishment has gone from the collective idea in our culture, and we can take God or leave Him, and that is our choice. 

The Scripture is clear about this. Those who reject Jesus Christ and refuse the sacrifice He made on the cross, will bear the weight of their own sins. God requires humility and repentance, but these words seem to have become meaningless in our present vocabulary. 

We tend to blame God for our failures and and behave like spoilt children, who have no respect, even for the person to whom all things belong, and who holds our breath in His hands. We have embraced folly and made friends with self- orientated philosophy, which will drag us down into sin and death.

Children are commanded to respect and care for their Mothers and Fathers. Do we see this happening? If we do not even respect our earthly parents, why then can we say we respect God? Many are leaving, ignoring and disrespecting their parents, because they are “doing God’s work” or have their own family and therefore negate their responsibilities for the person who sacrificed life and spend endless effort on their up bringing. God tells us about this in His Word.

“But know this, that in the last days, grievous times will come. 2For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, no lovers of good, traitors, headstrong, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God; traitors a form of godliness, but having denied its power. Turn away from these, also.”

2 Timothy 31-5

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