DEVOTION:HAVE YOU EVER CHANGED YOUR MIND ABOUT THIS?
Except for verse 11, the whole of chapter 1 of the book of Malachi, portrays a very pathetic spiritual condition of Israel. In the last verse of this chapter, God describes one of the ways the Israelites dishonored Him.
Cursed is the cheat who has an acceptable male in his flock and vows to give it, but then sacrifices a blemished animal to the Lord. For I am a great king,” says the Lord Almighty, “and my name is to be feared among the nations. Malachi 1:14
Notice it is not only by offering unacceptable animals that the Israelites dishonored the Lord; it is also by cheating on what they had vowed to give to God. Both are serious violations of God’s prescribed instructions.
Just in case you are not sure about what God’s word say about making a vow to God and then changing your mind, read the following passage.
When you make a vow to God, do not delay to fulfill it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow. It is better not to make a vow than to make one and not fulfill it. Do not let your mouth lead you into sin. And do not protest to the temple messenger, “My vow was a mistake.” Why should God be angry at what you say and destroy the work of your hands? Ecclesiastes 5:4-6
Did you see what it says about changing your mind on what you had vowed? If you change you mind, it is a sin. This is why in this passage of Ecclesiastes; we are warned to not be in a hurry to make a vow. But once you have made it, here is what you ought to do.
When you make a vow to God, do not delay to fulfill it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow. Ecclesiastes 5:4a-b.
Here is one more observation from this passage in Ecclesiastes. Once you have made a vow, do not go back to the messenger to protest that your vow was a mistake. The following is a serious warning on what would happen.
Why should God be angry at what you say and destroy the work of your hands? Ecclesiastes 5:6c
Now this is a serious punishment! God will destroy the work of your hands. That is, He will destroy what you have worked for. To state it differently, God will destroy what you have acquired.
God will do this, because as He said in our passage for today.
For I am a great king,” says the Lord Almighty, “and my name is to be feared among the nations. Malachi 1:14b
I hope you now can see why I have titled this devotion: Have You Ever Changed Your Mind About This?
1. So have you ever promised to give something to God, and then changed your mind later?
a. If so, what caused you to change your mind?
b. Were you aware of what God says about this?
c. Now that you know what God says about this, what should you do about it?
2. What would make anyone change his mind on what they have already vowed to give to God? I can think of a few.
a. A vow was made in a hurry without taking time to think or consult with those who hold a stake on what is to be given, e.g., your spouse.
b. A need arises and that what was vowed to be given to the Lord would be a perfect solution to take care of this need.
c. A disaster or illness.
d. Can you add to this list?
3. In spite of the above mentioned reasons that would cause anyone to change his/her mind on what they had promised God, it does not make it right for any believer to change his/her mind. In other words, these reasons do not give anyone an excuse to change their mind on what they had vowed to give to God.
4. Do you have any confession to make to God today? May be because:
a. You made a promise to God that if He answered your prayer, you promised to do something for Him?
b. You promised to take care of a particular need in your church but to this day, you have not fulfilled your promise.
c. You promised your Pastor to do something for him but to this day you have not fulfilled your promise.
d. You promised God if He gave you your current job, you promised to serve Him for the rest of your life, but these days you hardly show up in church or a Bible Study.
5. In what other way has this devotion spoken to you?
When you make a vow to God, do not delay to fulfill it.
He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow.
It is better not to make a vow than to
Make one and not fulfill it.
Do not let your mouth
Lead you into sin.
HAVE YOU EVER CHANGED YOUR MIND ABOUT THIS?
–Pastor Shadrack Ruto