SOME readers may recall the story of the newly converted couple who found themselves having to live in one of the slums, with its squalid surroundings, its neglect of cleanliness and its generally dirty and dilapidated conditions. How were they to break the ice and introduce new standards of living and ideas to their neighbours? One of the first things they did was to clean and whiten the doorstep to their house. The contrast to those adjacent was immediately apparent, and soon noticed by a courageous neighbour who copied their example. Gradually, one by one, the whole long line of doorsteps followed suit, to the greatly improved appearance of the street. Clean curtains appeared, and general cleanliness and tidiness became the order of the day.
Following along these lines, a former government official in England, in his summing-up of a comparable government matter, said, among other things, “Unless you secure the very highest standards of integrity and propriety at the top in public life, you cannot expect to have good standards at lower levels … If here some individuals are held guilty of impropriety … it is something which injures the whole body politic.”
This astute government official noted this some seventy years ago and if looking at the upper echelon of government in Israel nations today, the highest standards of integrity and propriety, as a whole, are sadly missing.
It should be remembered that the reason given in Holy Scripture for the withdrawal of the name ” Israel ” from God’s nation of old was that they had dishonoured it in the sight of the heathen. They ‘had lowered the national standard of morality, which was intended to constitute a demonstration of God’s holiness in the life of His people Israel. Today we have reached a later phase in the history of the same people at the end of the age—the specified period during which the ripened tares are due to be removed from the field of God’s Kingdom on earth at the time of its re-emerging. Already, there are evidences that the cleansing and removal of those things which offend has begun. It is well that it should commence among those to whom the added responsibility of government has been entrusted. Peter reminds us that ” judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” The great responsibility of the Celto-Saxon-Israel people demands this setting of their house in order, in view of the pending change of government of the world. Everything is to come under entirely new administration, under the direction and rule of our Lord Jesus Christ.
It is for us to first to set the example of the clean doorstep because, as has been aptly said, ” If everyone would sweep before their own door, all the village would be clean.” The whole world is awaiting cleansing from the evils which beset it, but upon Israel devolves the responsibility of adjusting its life, both nationally and individually, in its relations to God, that it may afford an object lesson which will attract the attention of the world, thus demonstrating what God can do when a people obeys His will and follows His precepts, and so pioneers the way for all nations to obey His laws. Shall we let 2019 witness a re-adjustment of our own lives so that they may conform to “His good, perfect, and acceptable will”?
Courtesy The National Message (Slightly Abridged)