“Seek the LORD, and ye shall live; lest he break out like fire in the house of Joseph, and devour it, and there be none to quench it in Bethel.”
Israel knew they were about ready to face God’s judgment for their sins. In an attempt to stave off His judgment, they chose to return to certain places where God had done something in their lives. They went back to Bethel, Gilgal and Beersheba, all places of spiritual meaning, but they still didn’t appease God. God wanted them to return to Him. He wanted them to seek Him over the places where He met them. Israel became enamored with the place instead of the God Who met with them in the place. This is why the verse above says, “Seek the LORD, and ye shall live…” God was tired of Israel making a place the significance of blessing instead of seeking the LORD with their heart the reason for blessings.
Sadly, Israel’s actions are seen over and over again in many believers. In an attempt to get God’s blessings, many believers go back to a place where God met with them thinking that being in the place is what will incur God’s blessings again. Sadly, instead of making the action of seeking the LORD their choice to incur God’s blessings, they made the place the significance over God.
My friend, it is never a place that will bring God’s blessings to you. Bethel is a picture of the house of God, and though Israel sought the house of God, they still didn’t get His blessings because they didn’t seek God. You can go to church for every service, but going to church becomes nothing but idolatry if you don’t go to church to seek the heart of God.
Israel sought Gilgal, a place of separation, to get God’s blessings, but they quickly found out that they could separate from the world and still not have the blessings of God. I’m all for the believer living a separated life, but if your separation becomes your identity for spirituality, you have lost the meaning of why you are to live the separated life. You live a separated life because you want to be so free from the world so that your relationship with the LORD is not hindered.
Israel sought Beersheba, a place of promise and victory, but though they returned to the place where they experienced blessings, they still never returned to the LORD. God is more interested in your heart returning to Him than He is you returning to places where you made significant spiritual promises to Him.
A place will never bring God’s blessings. You must be careful that you don’t get so wrapped up in a place that you miss the God Who met with you in that place. It is God Whom you should seek, not a place of spiritual significance. A place of spiritual significance means nothing if God is not there. You should spend your time seeking the heart of the LORD over seeking a place where God met with you.
Are you guilty of thinking you are spiritual because of a place? Your church doesn’t make you spiritual, but being right with the LORD is what makes you spiritual. Stop placing the significance on the place, and place it on the LORD. You will discover that any place can become a place of spiritual significance when you seek the LORD and His favor. Never make the mistake that Israel made by making a place important. Always make the LORD your chief desire to please. It is obeying the LORD that pleases Him and brings His blessings on your life.