Today’s Reading – 1 Chronicles 7 – 8 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)
Read the “0508 Evening and Morning” devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon
“And Azel had six sons, whose names are these, Azrikam, Bocheru, and Ishmael, and Sheariah, and Obadiah, and Hanan. All these were the sons of Azel.” (1Chronicles 8:38)
“And Azel had six sons, whose names are these, Azrikam, Bocheru, and Ishmael, and Sheariah, and Obadiah, and Hanan: these were the sons of Azel.” (1Chronicles 9:44)
Good morning. I was reading my Bible when I came upon this verse. The verse was 1Chronicles 8:38. It was a verse about a man named Azel who had six sons. I wouldn’t have noticed it, except that it appeared almost word for word as1Chronicles 9:44. When God says something twice in His Word, He is saying that there is something He wants you to know. There was something here that God wanted me to see, but what? It wasn’t until I looked at the meaning of the names of Azels’ six sons did something click. This chapter (8), and chapter 9 are the only two chapters we find Azel, the father of these six sons, located in. All we can glean from these two chapters is that he was in the bloodline of Israel’s first king, Saul, which means Azel was of the tribe of Benjamin. And he had six sons. After looking at the meaning of each of the names of the sons, realized that this was about life. The names of his sons are the stages of life we go through. Azel’s first son was Azrikam. His name means…
1) The Help Of An Enemy
Did you know that God hates sin? Twice, in Ezekiel 18, He says the soul that sinneth, it shall die. Because of Adam’s sin, we are all born with the will to sin against God. Eve was deceived, but Adam sinned. God was no longer his friend walking with Adam in the garden, but had become his Judge. They believed the serpent, the devil. They trusted him and not God. They wanted what they wanted, and not what God wanted.
James 4:4 says…
“Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” (James 4:4)
And because of Adam’s sin, today we are all sinners and at enmity with God. If your a friend to this world, you are an enemy of God. But Adam and Eve had the help of an Enemy. God made them coats of skins to cover up their nakedness. Some poor innocent animal had to die, had to have it’s blood shed, because of Adam and Eve’s sin. The innocent had to die for the guilty to be free. God showed Adam and Eve what needed to be done for the atonement for sin. Hebrews 9:22 will tell us that without the shedding of blood, there is no remission. This was the beginning of the blood sacrifice which would picture the Lord Jesus Christ coming and shedding His precious blood on a cross for our sins: for the sins of the world. Azel’s first son, Azrikam, means the Help Of An Enemy. Azel’s second son, Bochera means…
2) First Born.
I’m not going to speculate as to whether this is actually Azel’s first born, but this is what his name means. Normally in the genealogies the actual first born would be the first on the list. But this is the order that the Holy Spirit put them in, so it is correct. First born. Everyone living today has been born once. Jesus explains in John chapter 3…
“There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him. Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.” (John3:1-7)
You were born once, you must be born again to enter into the kingdom of God. How? That brings us to Azel’s third son. Ishmael means…
3) God Will Hear
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:13)
God is waiting; God will hear. God will hear you calling on Him to save you. That’s the only way you can be saved. Going to this church or that church will not get you into heaven. Your good deeds out-weighing your bad deeds will not get you into heaven. Ephesians 2:8-9 says…
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
“The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” (2Peter 3:9)
You need to to change your mind about how you are getting to heaven if it is not by Christ alone. The only way to heaven is through Christ. Call on His name, God will hear, and He will save you. You will be adopted into His family. He will be your Heavenly Father. You will be a child of God. Let me ask you, what happens to a child when he maybe reaches the teen years, maybe even sooner? They rebel. The same thing happens with the child of God: they backslide. You know what you need to do as a parent, and that brings us to the fourth of Azel’s sons: Sheariah. Sheariah means…
4) JAH (or Jehovah) Has Stormed.
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)
“Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.” (Proverbs 22:15)
“He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.” (Proverbs 13:24)
“Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee.” (Deuteronomy 8:5)
“For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?” (Hebrews 12:6-7)
Our country is being chastened. What do you expect when a nation built on the Word of God turns it’s back on God? We took prayer out of the schools, along with the Bible. Millions of babies were made to pass through the fire to the pagan god Molech via abortions. Sodomites are everywhere, even in the Boy Scouts now. That happened to almost every major empire before it’s demise. The Ten Commandments were taken out of all government offices. People freely take the Lord’s name in vain. Sheariah means Jah has stormed. The scribes used a shortened version of Jehovah because they did not feel worthy to write His full name. Today it’s dragged freely through the muck and the mire: on the street, in schools, in books, in music, in movies, and even on TV where it was not allowed at one time. Pornography abounds. It’s on the Internet, in the movies, on TV. Even magazines and newspapers that you can look at with your kids as you’re waiting to pay for your groceries. How does God want you to treat women?
“Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.” (1Peter 3:7)
Do you want your prayers answered or not? Even in our Christian schools there is disrespect. Not only towards the teachers, and other authorities, but among their peers too. Look at the next verses…
“Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.” (1Peter 3:8-12)
Now that the chastening is over (for now), that brings us to Azel’s fifth son: Obadiah. Obadiah means…
5) Serving Jah
We’ve matured somewhat since the chastening. Now that God has us going in the right direction again, we can serve Him. Ephesians 2:10 lets us know where those good works came from. They are not our good works, but were created by God for us to walk in…
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10)
If we are going to do the works God created for us to walk in, then we need to be walking in the Spirit. Walking in the Spirit will keep us doing what God wants, and not what we want. Look at Galatians 5:16…
“This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:16-25)
To live in the Spirit and to walk in the Spirit. Can you even imagine what could be done for the cause of Christ? It’s not impossible you understand to do that. God has given us everything we need to serve Him. God even has the Holy Spirit living inside of us. All we have to do is listen to Him. Do you think that would make God happy: His children doing His will? And that brings us to the last son of Azel. The sixth son was named Hanan. And Hanan means…
…he pleased God.
“By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God. But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:5-6)
Do you want to please God? Do you want His favor? Have faith in Him. Please Him. Obey Him.
We just looked at a person’s life through the names of the six sons of Azel. That person could be you, me, or all of us. You may be in the Bochera phase: First Born. Jesus said you must be born again. Jesus needs to know you. Jesus also said…
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” (Matthew 7:21-23)
Jesus needs to know you. Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me. Believe Him. Believe God’s Word. God’s Word says…
“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:” (Romans 3:10)
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Romans 3:23)
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23)
“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8)
“But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach; That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Romans 10:8-13)
If you ask the Lord to save you then Ishmael – GOD WILL HEAR.
And He will save you.
Posted in Devotions by Pastor Ted Stahl with 1 comment.