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The First Burning Bush Devotional was sent June 8, 1998.

DEVOTIONAL OF THE DAY

THE BURNING BUSH DEVOTIONAL

10.30.19

Time for a Change

So Moses made a bronze serpent, and put it on a pole; and so it was, if a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze serpent, he lived. - Numbers 21:9 NKJV.

He removed the high places and broke the sacred pillars, cut down the wooden image and broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made; for until those days the children of Israel burned incense to it, and called it Nehushtan. - 2 Kings 18:4 NKJV.

We remember the story of how the bronze serpent came into existence. It was because of the sin of the people that God had sent a plague of poisonous snakes into their camp after they had escaped from Egypt. Many were dying and Moses pleaded for help from God and he was told to make a bronze serpent and put it on a pole. If someone had a snake bite he was to look at that bronze serpent believing God would heal him and he would be healed.

The next mention of the bronze serpent is 2 Kings 18:4 in the reign of Hezekiah who was king of the southern kingdom of Judah from approximately 715 - 686 B. C. Apparently over the years the God's people had began to worship the creature, the bronze serpent, instead of the Creator. The exodus from Egypt is thought to have been about 1500 B.C. so this worship of the bronze serpent had been going on for hundreds of years. Hezekiah put a stop to it.

Hezekiah's father, Ahaz, was an evil king worshipping the false idols instead of the One true God. However, Hezekiah made a choice to turn from the evil and turn to the good even though his father lived in a different way. Here is the truth, just because your family or ancestors have lived in a way not pleasing to God, even for hundreds of years - you do not have to continue to do that! You can change, you can put your faith in Jesus Christ. That's what the third mention of the bronze serpent in the Bible tells us. John 3:14-15, "And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life."

Far too many people are living under the influence of cults. But just because you were raised in one does not mean that you have to keep on believing their false doctrines. Today, I leaned of another cult called Swedenborgianism. According to Got Questions dot org the cult believes teachings such as: "God has many names, depending on the beliefs/religion of the individual; the Holy Spirit is not God; the Trinity does not exist; Jesus Christ's death did not atone for our sin; salvation comes by practicing what you believe, whatever religion it might be; the afterlife is spiritual, but dependent on how well you lived in your physical body. All of those teachings are in opposition to Biblical Christianity."

David Weaver says that he was born and raised in Swedenborgianism. By the time he was 18-years-old he was an alcoholic and suicidal. His family and church leaders had no idea what to do with him, but they had heard of a man who had left the cult with similar problems and gotten his life straightened out. One day a man called him, Jim Davis, and they eventually met. Jim shared with David about Jesus and prayed for him. As a result, David prayed this prayer that Jim had written out for him: "Dear God, I am a sinner, I confess this to You. Please come into my life and be the Lord of my life. In Jesus Name Amen." David says, "The next day I went to work. Then suddenly at around 9:30 I stopped what I was doing. Something was different. Something had happened in me, I could feel it. I felt a real joy, peace and love I had never felt before. It was incredible! I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders. Now tears of Joy filled my eyes instead of tears of pain." (Read all of David's story at this link: carm dot org/christianity/testimonies/leaving-cult-alcoholism-depression-and-finding-jesus-david-weavers-story)

David's life was transformed by the power of God. Are you living in a cult? You don't have to stay. You too can leave through the power of God.



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