“Yet ye have forsaken me, and served other gods: wherefore I will deliver you no more. Go and cry unto the gods which ye have chosen; let them deliver you in the time of your tribulation.”
The Book of Judges is a result of not following all of the LORD’s command. God commanded Israel in Numbers 33:52-53, “Then ye shall drive out all the inhabitants of the land from before you, and destroy all their pictures, and destroy all their molten images, and quite pluck down all their high places: And ye shall dispossess the inhabitants of the land, and dwell therein: for I have given you the land to possess it.” Driving out all of the inhabitants means that there should be nothing left of these people. When they went to possess the land, they were to destroy all the people and anything they used. There was to be nothing left behind other than the flocks and herds.
God warned Israel what would happen if they didn’t obey all of His Word. He told them in verse 55, “But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you; then it shall come to pass, that those which ye let remain of them shall be pricks in your eyes, and thorns in your sides, and shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell.” God was saying that whatever they didn’t destroy would become the very thing that would become their downfall.
In the verses above, Israel’s skeletons came out of their closet. They didn’t destroy everything as God told them to do, and now the things that they didn’t destroy were the things that lured them back into sin. It was their skeletons that God told them to cry to because they left Him. Their incomplete obedience resulted in their total disobedience. Two lessons need to be learned from Israel’s actions.
First, incomplete obedience always leads to total disobedience. You may have partly obeyed God, but incomplete obedience opens the doors to total disobedience. You can go to church for a few services, but it eventually leads to dropping completely out of church. You can pay your tithes here and there, but it eventually leads to not tithing at all. You can go soul winning off and on, but eventually you will never go soul winning. You can deal with some of your sin, but eventually the sin you don’t deal with is what eventually takes over your life. Incomplete obedience always leads to total disobedience.
Second, you can hide skeletons for so long before they eventually come out of the closet. Israel handled these countries for a while, but the sins of these countries eventually wore them down to accept the lifestyle these sins brought. You can hide sin for so long before the affects of those sins eventually come out of the closet and become evident in your daily life. You are going to find that your skeletons will come out of the closet at the most inopportune time.
If you don’t want to have to deal with skeletons coming out of your closet, you had better deal with all of your sin. My friend, never accept the Devil’s offer of incomplete obedience. Always remember that whatever area you don’t obey in will eventually become a skeleton that will come out of the closet at the wrong time. The best way to keep skeletons from coming out of the closet is to deal with all of your sin. If there is some sin you have not dealt with, let me encourage you to deal with it now before the skeletons come.