Hosea 13:9, “O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help.”
Israel was destroyed! The same thing that happened to Israel is occurring in America today. The people of Israel observed in their day what we are observing in our day. They watched the deterioration of their nation as we likewise are seeing in our day. The destruction unfortunately is a self-inflicted thing for Israel as well as the America we call home. They loved their nation as we love our nation. However, their love for themselves was greater than their love for their God.
Liberalism is not the answer for any nation, society, family, school, college, and especially for the house of God and the man of God. It appears that appeasing is the appeal of the day. Why can’t we all just get along seems to be the cry of the day without any consideration of the outcome. The mantra of our day is as long as we get along we could care less about the future of our children and grandchildren.
Truth trumps any relationship in life because it sustains a relationship with God, which in turn is reflected in human relationships bathed in truth. Human relationships are not the means to an end. A divine relationship is the relationship that allows us to be a conduit for God to live through us and develop proper and productive relationships with other humans for Christ’s sake and not our sake.
Israel was destroyed and she blamed her enemies. She blamed Samaria, Assyria, Egypt, Judah, Tyre, Sidon, and her northern neighbor Syria. She was destroyed and God said Egypt, Samaria, Syria, Assyria, Tyre, Sidon, and Judah did not destroy you. God said, “O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself…” God is saying to them you have no one to blame but yourselves.
Many folks in our churches are saying the same thing. “I would have succeeded if I had a good wife, but my wife was the reason for my destruction.” No, she was not the reason! Husband, thou hast destroyed thyself! If you ever fail in a marriage you cannot justifiably point to your wife. Now, she may have not been everything she should have been, but in the final analysis the Scriptures say, “…every man will give account of himself to God…”
“I could have succeeded if my parents had reared my properly.” Please pay attention, son thou has destroyed thyself! Daughter, thou hast destroyed thyself. If you fail you cannot blame a drunkard father. If you fail you will not truthfully be able to blame a careless mother or an unhappy home. If you are destroyed God will say to you, “Thou hast destroyed thyself…” It is a personal decision not a parental decision that brings about success in life.
God pity the soul of every young person who comes from a good home that does not turn out right. “But, my daddy never took me fishing!" Son, thou hast destroyed thyself. “But, my mother never showed any affection!” Daughter, thou hast destroyed thyself. “But, my daddy never took me to a Texas Rangers baseball game.” Son, thou hast destroyed thyself. “But, my mother never taught me how to be a good wife.” Daughter, thou hast destroyed thyself. “But, the pastor mistreated me and my family.” Sir, thou hast destroyed thyself. “But, the principal mistreated my son.” Parent thou has destroyed thyself. “But, the teacher flunked my son.” Parent, thou hast destroyed thyself.
Israel said we have neighbors that are always bothering us and it is Samaria’s fault we are destroyed. However, God said, “Thou hast destroyed thyself…” Israel said to God our perennial enemy Syria has caused our trouble and God replied, “Thou hast destroyed thyself…” God let them know that they have no one to blame but themselves.
A wife says, “I could have succeeded if I had a better husband!” No, if you do not succeed or succeed it will not be the badness of your husband. It will be the badness or the goodness of your character. My dear 98 year-old mother, who is in Heaven, did not have it made, but my mother was a success as a wife and mother. If Mary Elizabeth Gray had failed she would have had no one to blame but Mary Elizabeth Gray.
I am feed up with this “blame it” generation this victim society we have created in the USA. These idiotic academic head shrinks who explore into the past in order to find someone or some thing to blame are destroying our people. They remind me of those who blame devils for every thing. No one wants to take personal responsibility for their actions and as a result we not only fail we take others down with us.
Sorry Israel, “Thou hast destroyed thyself…” I do not care what your background is. I do not care who hurt you, who your mother is, what your daddy did, what kind of a wife you have, what kind of a husband you have, and what kind of a poverty stricken life you lived in, you will self destruct if you do not take the challenges of life head on!
Every life that is destroyed is a suicide! “I would have succeeded but I have lost confidence in my pastor.” Your pastor did not destroy you! You destroyed your self with self-destruction! You have no one to blame but yourself. You committed suicide.
“My church ruined my life because it was not what it should have been.” It may not have been, but you have a copy of God’s Word that is what it ought to be and you could have read it, if you had wanted too! Jesus is what He ought to be. The Holy Spirit is what He ought to be. God the Father is what He ought to be. You have no one to blame but yourself.
“I would have succeeded but I had an awful boss and everyone knows what he is life. That is the reason I did not succeed.” No, the reason you failed is because you self-destructed! “I would have made it if I had not been born in Shreveport’s slums.” No, the reason you may not make it because you have not taken personal responsibility for your life and not your birth.
“I would have made it if it had not been for bad luck.” It is amazing to me that the ones who make it in life are lucky and the ones who fail are unlucky. Isn’t it interesting that those who work hard always have good luck and lazy devils have bad luck? It is amazing to me how those who rise early and stay up late are always so lucky and succeed. If you fail it is your fault and the words on you tombstone ought to be “Thou hast destroyed thyself…”
Others can wound you, but they cannot destroy you. Others can hinder you and knock you down but they cannot knock you out. Others can lead you to self-destruct, but they cannot destroy you. Others can discourage you, but they cannot destroy you. Others can depress and tempt you, but they cannot destroy you.
God is saying to Israel, “I know your neighbors! I know Assyria, Syria, Tyre, Sidon, and Egypt, but thou hast destroyed thyself!”
If you destroy yourself it will be you who pulls the trigger or flip the switch on your life. Students who wash out, quit, go home, become Benedict Arnolds, turn yellow, become spiritual cowards, spiritual weaklings, tuck tail and go home from Bible College give reasons that are not the real reasons. The truth is they destroyed themselves. Oh, they blame the teachers, Dean of Men, Dean of Women, Registrar, Vice-President, President, Chancellor, or Pastor; but the truth is they self-destructed.
Life is not fair! Read that again! Life is not fair! It makes no difference where you are, who you are with, or who is over you. You either succeed or fail in life because you either refuse to self-destruct or choose to self-destruct!
When you decide to quit your Sunday school class, bus route, choir, orchestra, ushering, staff position, or being a deacon you will give every reason in the world except the real reason. You self-destructed! I can prove it! Others made it with the same circumstances while you failed!
Here is Israel, she is defeated and destroyed! She blames everybody around her, but God said, “Thou hast destroyed thyself…”
If you get knocked down you don’t have to stay down. If you can’t get through you can certainly try again. If life pens you to the mat you can still lift that shoulder one more time. If your way is blocked today go at again tomorrow. Quit blaming every one else. REFUSE to self-destruct!
If people have discouraged you, depressed you, tempted you, made it hard for you; you can still make if you refuse to self-destruct.
Deuteronomy 33:25, “Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be.” God gave the tribe of Asher a mountainous terrain when the land was divided. God said to Asher, “I am giving you ‘iron shoes.’” Why, you have got some rocky days ahead of you! God never said to anybody else that he would give them shoes of iron! They did not get their shoes after the trip or when they got into the trip. He said before you get started I am going to give you shoes of iron. God is saying He will give to His children what they need to make it through the rough days. He always has!
· NEVER CONTEMPLATE BLAMING ANY ONE FOR YOUR SETBACKS IN LIFE
· NEVER THINK THAT IT IS OVER BECAUSE OF THE SETBACK
· NEVER GO THROUGH A SETBACK WITHOUT LEARNING A LESSON
· NEVER GO BACK