THERE IS A PAYDAY
Let me give you four tragic results of dethroning the Lord.
“Israel empties his vine; He brings forth fruit for himself” (Hosea 10:1). Everyone in Israel was looking out for himself and the result was total emptiness. Hosea was speaking here to believers, showing them a picture of what happens to all who push the Lord out of their lives. Such people become selfish and miserable — and their every pursuit ends in emptiness.
“Their heart is divided . . . He will break down their altars; He will ruin their sacred pillars” (verse 2). Our nation’s heart is divided. Americans pay lip service to God and religion, but they don’t worship the Lord in truth. That has led directly to the breakdown of all our hallowed institutions. Our society no longer trusts God, turning instead to the government, the educational system, Social Security — all in an effort to find some kind of stability. God is saying, “If you don’t trust Me, I’ll make all your trusted institutions fail. You won’t have anything left to believe in.”
“You have plowed wickedness; you have reaped iniquity . . . because you trusted in your own way” (verse 13). Hosea is saying, “You stopped trusting in the Lord and now you’re going to reap a harvest of iniquity!” Humankind today is sophisticated, educated, but we have rejected the Bible and prayer. And where has all our sophisticated learning brought us?
“We have no king, because we did not fear the Lord” (verse 3). The heart of king of Israel was full of idolatry. So when Israel’s backsliding began, he was powerless to stop their loss of faith. His words carried no authority and the people murmured, “We have no leadership, no direction. We are drifting!”
The same thing is happening today in our churches. Many Christians mock their pastors, ridiculing their authority. Why? Because their words carry no power! People say, “We no longer have any leadership in our church. We’re lost and confused.” Sadly this is the payday for dethroning the Lord.