The Minor Prophets Speak to Today
God Did What He Said He Would Do
Tired Old Men Saying The Same Thing Over and Over:
The problem with prophets, or should I say those who hear or read the prophets - whether prophetic voices from today or the past, is that they say the same thing over and over again. Not literally, well - sometimes literally, but within the variety of their words they keep saying the same thing: "Repent, return to your God!"
When my father talks to me, he is 93 years old, he usually tells the story of first seeing my mother and their courtship. He uses the same words each time. Otherwise he tells me about his travels during World War 2 emphasizing the same places and events each time. Dad is not senile. We do talk about other things, more current topics, news, or concerns. But always somewhere in the conversation his courtship - they were married 68 years - and/or his war experiences are recited. And I do not mind it. I am so glad he talks with me and shares what is important to him. That is not true of some other old men I have known whose repetitive dialogue wears on my nerves.
Prophets come across as tired old men telling the same old story every time you see them and over and over again when you talk to them. People get tired of hearing them. People get tired of the message. People get hardened to the message. It gives them a headache and they just want it to go away.
So they stop reading the message - in the Bible, in blogs. The Christian magazines do not even print the message. It just doesn't sell.
And, we really get tired of talk about our ancestors, about what God said to them, and about what happened as a result of their non-response. Besides, if you're not Jewish, it doesn't apply to us. Our ancestors were better than that.
And, by the way, Zechariah prophesied as a young man. No tired old repeater here!
Where Are The Prophets And Your Ancestors Now:
God asks, "Where are your ancestors now?"
That's a leading question. The first correct answer - "They are dead!" But if I say that to God maybe he'll reply, "Just like I said they would be." Untimely death, that too big a part of prophecy, rests uneasy against our conscience. What if our ancestors merely passed on to us a form of religion? The very indifference to prophecy we feel now? Our hearts condemn us! We are too frightened to speak. We suddenly understand who are we to instruct God.
So God answers for us. He states the obvious. They and the prophets are dead.
However, did you notice what comes next?
"But everything I said through my servants the prophets happened to your ancestors just as I said."
If to them, who tried to ignore the message, what about us?
Then a divine surprise. All was not lost. After what God said through the prophets happened - oh joy - our ancestors repented.
God Did What He Said He Would Do:
God did what he said he would do. He did not spare our ancestors, but in their indifference, in their too long delayed response, he let them reap exactly what they sowed.
How sad the repentance of our ancestors.
"We have received what we deserved from the Lord of Heaven's Armies.
He has done what he said he would do."
Is That The Legacy We Want To Leave To