Rabbi Schneider - Responding to God's Love
If I could only get this through to all of us, God's call upon our lives demands a response. The Song of Songs reveals to us the beauty of God and His deep affection for His people. Now, there's two primary characters in the book. The first character is the Shulamite bride and the second character is the King. In the natural, it was the relationship between King Solomon and his bride to be, the Shulamite bride. But prophetically, this book is a book about God's relationship to His people. It has always been understood that way. Every book in the scripture, ultimately points to Jesus. Listen, my beloved, behold he is coming, climbing on the mountains, leaping on the hills. My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag, behold he's standing behind a wall. He's looking through the windows, he's peering through the lattice.
Now, I know this is really like what's going on here. Remember, this is poetry. It's sanctified, God-breathed poetry, that's bringing into a depth of understanding the intimacy that we can enjoy with Yeshua and indeed the intimacy that He enjoys with us. So let's review what's happened up to this point. The Shulamite bride had a revelation of the real nature of God. God had come to her, He had revealed himself to her. He gave her an encounter and His love and she under His power completely gave her life to Him. And the Lord blessed her and refresh her and she really blossomed and grew in that experience. It's much the same way when you and I first meet Jesus.
When you and I, some of you can relate to this, not all of you, but many of you can, especially if you came to the Lord later in life, when you first discovered Yeshua, it was like He was all around you, everything was brand new. Some of you woke up the next day and the whole world seemed more colorful. And it just seemed like God was always doing little miracles in your life. And you were so aware of His presence, but then eventually as time went on, it seemed like that closeness that you enjoyed when you first came to know Him, began to subside. And we're going to see now eventually that the Shulamite bride runs into that same experience.
What I love about this book, Shir ha-Shirim, the Song of Songs, is it's such an accurate portrayal of reality that shows us what we should expect as we journey deeper into our relationship with Hashem. In other words, as you stick with me through the survey of the Song of Songs, you're going to learn mysteries of what will happen in your journey and my journey as we continue on with God. It's going to give us the full realm of the emotional spectrum, highs, lows, times where we're experiencing Him, times when He seems far away and we can't feel Him, it's all here. So what has happened up to this point is she has just been bathed in His goodness. Like when you and I first got saved, she was so aware of His reality. And now as we continue deeper in our study, we're going to find that there are different dimensions of the relationship that are now going to be experienced by her.
And once again, beloved one, she is a type of you and I, so let's hear again what she says. Behold, he is coming. He's climbing on the mountains, leaping on the hills. My beloved is like a gazelle or a young stag, behold, he's coming, standing on the wall, looking through the windows, pairing through the lattice. Just a few comments that we can derive from this. First of all, when she sees her beloved, who's Yeshua to you and I, leaping on the mountains, what this signifies is the Lord's authority over all the earth. The mountains are the high points of the earth. She saw Yeshua, prophetically leaping from one mountain top to the other mountain top victorious over the world. And so you and I, as I shared last week, it's not enough for us to simply say, I believe that Yeshua has authority over the entire world.
Many of us know the scripture verse, Yeshua said, "All authority on heaven and earth has been given to me". It's not enough to believe that intellectually, it's not enough to say yes to the doctrine. True faith, reaches out and takes a hold of it. In other words, true faith, saving faith, only takes place when something within us individually, reaches out, takes ahold of God's truth and brings it into our own life. Many people think they're walking in saving faith because they've intellectually agreed with doctrine, but that's not saving faith. Saving faith is when something in us is initiated and reached out and takes a hold of God's word. So when Yeshua says, all authority in heaven and earth is given to me, faith reaches out and takes that. And then whatever's going on in our life, as we're journeying in the world, we declare Yeshua has authority over everything in the earth. Everything in my life, not a Sparrow falls from the ground apart from Him. And I need to stay in faith, believing God's love over my life, believing everything that's happening for me and around me is for my good and it's serving God's purpose.
We need to stay in faith that we're not victims down here, that Yeshua is leaping on the mountains with authority over the world. There's difficult times that happen and if we're honest with ourselves, a lot of times we can find ourselves moaning and whining and complaining. But if we really believe that Yeshua has authority over the earth, that He's leaping from mountain to mountain, that He loves us, that He causes all things to work together for good for us. Then we're not going to have an attitude of moaning and whining and whimpering. That's called demonic attitude. And say we're going to stay in faith rejoicing continually knowing God is using it all for the good. Paul said that from jail, rejoice continually, believing God was going to use it all for good. In fact, while Paul was in jail, he said that his imprisonment was being used to the Lord for the furtherance of the Gospel.
So I wanted you to hear that first of all, she sees the Lord in victory. And I want to encourage you and I today, let's affirm that God is reigning over the world. I love to share the example before we move on of Yeshua about to be crucified, standing before Pilate, the whole world distanced themselves from Him. Even His disciples ran and denied they knew Him. Here He is before Pilate and Pilate asking Him questions and Yeshua is sitting there cool as a cucumber, calm as a sea of glass. And Pilate is rattled by this. He says to Jesus, "Don't you know, I have the power to crucify you". In other words, he doesn't understand why Yeshua is not rattled, why Jesus is not responding to his questions, the way that Pilate thought he should respond, in fear and in anxiety. And Jesus said to Pilate, you would have no power over me unless it had been granted to you from above.
And so Jesus knew that God had authority over the world and He lived in that reality. He walked in that reality. He didn't think He was a victim, He always saw Himself as the victor, regardless of what was happening to Him. And so I really want to encourage you, you and I today let's receive that mentality. Let's walk by faith, declaring that even when it seems like we're going backward, even when it seems like the world has taken something from us, let's stand in faith. Believe that Yeshua is leaping on the mountains, His banner over us is love, just like the Shulamite bride just got done saying earlier on the Song of Songs I covered last week and that whatever's going on, God sees it all. And He's doing a good thing. That's faith.
Look what she says next. She says, behold, he is standing, I'm in verse number nine now, behold, he is standing behind our wall. He is looking through the windows. He is peering through the lattice. In other words, he's looking in, he's looking in from eternity into the window of our lives. Listen, again. She said, behold, he's standing behind our wall, we might not be able to see Him, right? We can't see Him sometimes. I mean, all the time, we can't see Him visibly. We can't feel Him sometimes, but yet He's standing, He's there. He is standing behind the wall. Listen, he is looking through the windows. He is peering through the lattice. He's standing behind the wall, we can't see him, but he's looking in, he's got a window in. He's able to see through the wall. And he's looking through the lattice. He's observing our lives and beloved listen to the secret. He's wanting us to respond.
That's what you and I sometimes don't get, He's looking at our lives, looking from behind the wall. We can't see Him, but He's looking through the window. He's looking through the lattice beloved ones. He can see us. And what's He looking for? He's looking for you and I to respond to Him in love and in faith, if I could only get this through to all of us, God's call upon our lives demands a response. Many of us, we're just looking to God to do everything. We're just looking to Hashem to answer our prayers. But we don't realize, too often, likewise, that He is looking to us to do something. He's looking to us to respond. His call upon our life once again, His love that's been measured out to us, it demands a response to it from us. God wants a love relationship with you and I, whom He created in His own image to be His bride. And in order for true love to take place, both people have to have a free will. God has a free will, and He's created you and I with free will.
That's why Joshua said, "Choose this day, whom you will serve". God is looking through the wall, through the lattice, through the window, He's looking at our lives. He sent His son because He loved us so much to take our sins in His own body, in the tree, to bring us into a relationship with Himself. And now it's up to us to choose to respond to that love, to say yes to Him, to by faith say, I believe that you love me. And I give my life to you and I'm going to stay in faith. I'm going to believe your word. And I'm going to declare your word. I'm going to self initiate faith. I'm going to self initiate love.
You see beloved, what I'm saying is this, no one can give your heart to God, but you, the Lord is looking through the window. He's looking through the wall. He's looking at you and I, and He's wanting something from us. And what He's wanting from us is our heart's response to Him. And no one can do that, but you and I, that's why it's important for you and I to recognize, church, that we individually have a responsibility. If I could stress enough, you and I have to carry the weight of responsibility for our lives. We can't just be passive, there is some thing that we must do. And I'm speaking, especially now to those whom of you, whom God has marked, what do I mean by marked? The Shulamite bride in the Song of Songs she had been marked. She had encountered the Lord. She knew He was real. She knew that He loved her.
Some of you under the sound of my voice right now, you've been marked. The Lord has made Himself real to you at some point in your life, He has shown up in such a way, you know He's alive. You know He's real, you know this Bible is the word of God. And as a result of being marked, you now have a responsibility and your responsibility is to step out in faith, to love Him back, to stay in faith, to fight the fight of faith, to wrestle the principalities and powers of darkness that would want you to be discouraged. That would want us to doubt. That would want to keep us in unbelief. That would want to make us passive. We're in a war beloved ones. We need to self initiate through that darkness and say, yes, Lord, I believe you. I believe you love me. I'm going to stand in your word and I'm going to order my steps, father God, after you every single day.
Now, before I go on, I want to just talk about as we take responsibility for our lives, because the Lord is looking through the window of our lives, waiting for us to respond. And I want to, just before I close today, talk about one more huge stumbling block the powers of darkness use to keep us from our destiny. Remember Jesus said, "Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many will seek to enter and not be able". Remember He said, the narrow gate, He said broad and wide is the way that leads to destruction. And many of them are that take it. There's all kinds of things that lead to destruction, millions of things can distract us and lead us to destruction. But to enter in, Jesus said, you have to strive to enter through the narrow gate.
And so I've been talking about the Lord, looking through the window, into our lives, wanting us to respond to His love by giving our hearts to Him and by walking in faith. One of the enemies tactics to keep us from doing that is distraction. And I believe as I speak, that there has never been a time in the history of the world with more demonic distractions than, beloved ones, today. There are more things in the spiritual atmosphere that surround our lives to distract us, than has ever been since the history of creation. If you go back 10 years, 20 years, 50 years, no matter how long you go back, life was less complicated. It was simpler, but the further we move into the future, there are more distractions and the more complicated life becomes.
Now we've got the internet, we've got the television, we've got careers, we've got jet travel. We've got all these things that are distracting us, all the social medias. Those things can keep us out of the kingdom of God because they can drain us and distract us. And so I want you to understand today that even those things that can be used as tools like social media, if we are not extremely careful, they will distract us and keep us from entering in. And God is wanting for you and I to respond. Every day, when we begin the day, we should be in the word of God, whether it's reading the Bible, whether it's reading devotionals that incorporate the Bible, we should begin the day by getting ourselves focused.
How can we begin the day without giving God first place? And then we should be praying to Him throughout the day. And prayer doesn't have to be out loud, just a conscious awareness of the fact that He's watching us so that we order our heart after Him. We order our thoughts after Him. We order our words after Him. We make ourselves accountable to obey Him. And then when we go to sleep at night, I personally believe, I don't want to sound legalistic, but I think this is wisdom, before we go to sleep, we again, get in the word. Whether it's a devotional that incorporates the word, whether you're going straight to the Bible, get in the word of God. We have to order our steps because remember, God is looking for us to respond.
Let's keep our eyes on Jesus. Let's not be distracted. Paul said he had suffered the loss of all things, the book of Philippians, and counted them, but rubbish in order that he might gain Christ and know Him in the power of His resurrection and in the fellowship of His sufferings. And so you and I today should only have one goal in front of us, to follow Christ Jesus, to lay a hold of Him, Jesus calling us to give up everything else to follow Him.
So Father God, today in Yeshua's name, we thank you that you promise that you would complete in us what you began. And we want to say yes to you, Father, we surrender to you today, have your way in our lives. For your glory we pray.