Scripture Reading: 2 Chronicles 10:1-12:16 / 1 Corinthians 14:1-19 / Proverbs 20:15-24
Abandonment is the act of forsaking, leaving or deserting something or someone. We associate abandonment with many things in the world…a house, vehicle, education even children. How can we ever begin to understand how or why a parent would abandon their child? There does not seem to be any valid reason yet abandonment happens never the less.
The greatest act of abandonment is abandoning God. What would life be like if we would dismiss and forsake God? I would hate to think about the repercussions of a decision such as that, yet we read where King Rehoboam and Israel abandoned God. They forsook God’s law and word. They ceased to seek God in prayer for divine direction and intervention. They sought other means of fulfillment and purpose.
Were they disappointed with God…was God too harsh…did their life lack hope, assurance or contentment? For whatever reason, they abandoned the ways of God and ceased to follow Him. His law was no longer their guide as they sought the idols and gods of other nations. They were completely unfaithful to The Lord.
I have often wondered why people would abandon a God who establishes a relationship of hope, assurance, forgiveness and grace with them. The fullness of truth and love does not satisfy their inward longing and they abandon their faith. They search for something “greater, fulfilling, or exciting” and look for it in every crevice of the world.
People do not value what they abandon until it is gone. Israel had the protection of God upon them but when they abandoned God, He left them. The prophet told Rehoboam and the leaders of Judah and said, “This is what the Lord say, you have abandoned me, therefore I now abandon you to Shishak.” (2 Chronicles 12:4) The king of Egypt invaded Judah, captured all of the fortified cities and took everything of value, even the treasures in the temple and palace.
The response of the king and Judah’s leaders was one of regret and honesty. “They humbled themselves and said, “The Lord is just.”(vs.5) They made no excuses for their sin and did not blame God for His abandonment. God simply responded justly and appropriately…they responded with confession and humility.
Yes, They Got What They Deserved, but they also got what they didn’t deserve… grace and mercy. Because of their humility, God responded with mercy and did not allow them to be destroyed but promised a sure deliverance. There are consequences for abandonment but thankfully…God is into restoration and redemption! Abandoning God costs us more than we can ever imagine yet we do not need to stay abandoned. He is a merciful and welcoming Heavenly Father…just ask the prodigal son!