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Vol.  9  No. 6 June 2007  Page 6
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Mark McWhorter

Youth Page By Mark McWhorter

Chastised with Scorpions

    In 1 Kings 12 we read about Rehoboam being made king over Israel. Rehoboam was asked by many of the tribes to make their lives easier than his father had. Rehoboam consulted with the old men who had counseled Solomon his father. They told him to be a servant to the people. He did not like their counsel. So, he asked counsel of men his own age. They told him to be hard on the people.

    Rehoboam then goes to the people and tells them that he is going to be very hard on them. In verse 11, he says, “And now, whereas my father did lade you with a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke: my father hath chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.”

    There are several things that Rehoboam could mean by scorpions. This Hebrew word was used to reference the animal scorpion. This animal has a stinger on its tail that can inflict a very hurtful wound. The word was also used in reference to a thicket bush that had very long needles. These needles could also inflict a severe wound. Sometimes people were disciplined by being flogged with these bushes.

    Another thing the word referenced was a special whip. This whip had lead balls tied into the ends of the leather straps. This whip would not only cause welts but would also severely bruise the skin. It could also tear the skin after several strikes.

    Rehoboam made a big mistake in saying these things. The majority of the people decided they would not stay under his reign. Instead, they chose to be ruled by Jeroboam.

    God rules us with love. He has great mercy and grace. I am thankful that we have a loving God. But we must also remember that God is just. He will punish us in the Judgment if we have not obeyed his will. Rehoboam’s hard rule was not just. But God’s punishment will be just. And God’s punishment will be much worse than a scorpion’s sting, or a needle prick, or even a flogging.

    Read your Bible. Study it. And if any of this is hard to understand, ask an adult to help you.

Steve HigginbothamEmpty!

By Steve Higginbotham

This past week, a friend of mine (who shall remain nameless) had some car trouble more than 500 miles from his home. If you’ve ever been in that situation, it is certainly disconcerting to say the least. What do you do? Who do you call? How much will it cost? All these questions rush through your mind.

In my friend’s case, after paying a tow truck, it was just a matter of putting gas in the gas tank (now do you see why he will remain nameless)?

But in his defense, while he ran out of gas, his gas gauge was showing that he still had a quarter of a tank of gas remaining. Of course, I couldn’t help but see a spiritual application in this event.

How many people do you suppose are trusting in a “fallible gauge?” How many people do you think are being told they’re alright, but their “tank is empty”? I do know that on the day of Judgment, there will be some who stand before Christ, surprised that they are not saved (Matthew 7:21-23).

To avoid such a fate, we must trust in the only “gauge” that will never fail and never mislead us…the Word of God. Friends, spend time in God’s Word so that you can make your calling and election sure.

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