1 Kings 17:6
The ravens brought (ELIJAH THE PROPHET) bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.
I have met and dealt with some very unpleasant people in life, and particularly on the mission field. With the exception of a few ‘missionaries’ themselves, it is easy to dismiss them as non believers, and walk away from them. I usually don’t though. There is a reason that God has placed them in my life. Occasionally (albeit rarely) they get saved as a result of our friendship. Sometimes they help us out financially or materially to our surprise. Almost always they have introduced me to some pretty stellar people, or have taught me something invaluable. Don’t be dismissive of people who are not like you. Don’t ignore the people who don’t fit into your ‘parameters’ that you think God has set. The only people that God tells us to run from are wolves in sheep’s clothing, people who claim to be Christians who really aren’t. God never tells us to run from the unsaved sinners. Personally, I think most wolves in sheep’s clothing are unsaved sinners themselves, so I feel sorry for them.
The Bible lists the raven as an unclean thing….yet, God used an unclean thing to feed Elijah, His anointed prophet when he was running for his life. God does similar things in many other places in the Bible. David ate the show bread when he was fleeing from Saul. Jesus healed on the Sabbath, and His disciples were eating wheat in the field without washing their hands.
Does God randomly make rules, and then break them? No, of course not. Rules are to be followed. Jesus explained it best in the book of Mark.
Then he said to them, “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for theSabbath.
God’s rules were created for man, not man for the rules. Sometimes God allows things or people in our lives that are Ravens to help us or to test us. He wants to see if we grasp this foundational truth. There are times in this life when we have to make a decision that appears that we are disobeying God to the observers, but really we are hearing His voice and following Him.
Ravens are considered unclean because they are scavengers. We work with families that have been scavengers in the dump of Managua for countless generations. I have seen these same people eat unimaginable things and am amazed how God protects them from germs and violence. Scavengers get thefood that is thrown away. Ravens even get food from the flesh dead animals. That is unclean in God’s eyes, the Israelites eyes, and most people’s eyes. God’s laws for the fleeing Israelites in the desert were in part basic survival skills. He made the Kashrut *kosher dietary laws* so that His chosen people didn’t get sick. He said other things like ‘your river bath should be downstream from where you drink’ etc. Common sense things that only makes sense when you know about such things as Trichinosis (a disease that you get from pigs), Salmonella (that you get from rotting flesh), etc. The Israelites did not know about germs in those days, so some of the rules God made for them were to help them to avoid the invisible germs and bacteria.
Rules are for man, not the other way around. God made them so He can do what He wants with them.
Peter’s Vision (one of the first Jewish believers in Jesus)
‘the net’ contained all kinds of four-footed animals and reptiles of the earth, as well as birds of the air. Then a voice spoke to him: “Get up, Peter, kill and eat!” “No, Lord!” Peter answered, “I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.”
As modern day Christians, we try to do that with who we associate with. We tend to do that only with people with people who believe like us, ignoring thesinners. We should talk to anyone and every one that God permits us too. Even with FB, that old crow! For example, the guy with the Mohawk, mascara, tattoos and body odor in the line in front of you obviously wants attention. Why not talk to him? The Muslim family, the same sex couple, and the street walkers are sure that if you are a true modern day evangelical American Christian you will hate them. Prove them wrong! (Christian and hate should never be in the same sentence.) I love it when I see Christians joyfully and lovingly reach out to those. Acts 10:13 was God telling Peter to go to thegentiles, the non-Jews (same as us going to ‘non-Christians’ today.) Peter said ‘No way Jose!’.
God’s response to Peter’s self righteousness was….
◄ Acts 10:15 ►
The voice spoke to him a second time, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.”
Christians should not be name callers. Christians should be obedient to theLord God Most High.
I have had salesmen, sales managers, pastors, christian workers, missionaries, and Christians in general not want to meet someone. If they are a professional, they need to resign. If they are just a believer, they really need to examine their own faith very closely. We should be open to meet them all, especially theravens. I love it when people I don’t know lock horns with me. It means they’re listening. I don’t even mind hanging out with the wolf in sheep’s clothing. Most of them started out with good intentions, and got hurt along the way.
The most important thing to remember is, WE DON’T KNOW IF A PERSON IS A RAVEN OR NOT UNTIL WE GET TO KNOW THEM. IF THEY ARE A RAVEN, WE DON’T KNOW IF GOD SENT THEM TO US (OR US TO THEM) OR NOT. That is why Jesus got invited to all the good parties. Because He was nice to people. He gave them a chance to talk and to get to know them. He loved them, and was interested in them. Let us try to do thesame. Let’s be the Light of the world that Jesus says we are, not just cloistered monks in a monastery (or church building) somewhere with only people that believe like us.
Jesus said we are the light of the world
◄ Matthew 5:14 ►
You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.
We are the light, the darkness is going to find us anyway, so embrace it! Don’t fear it. The RAVENS can’t overcome you, they will only be attracted to you.
◄ John 1:4-5 ►
In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. The Light shines in thedarkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.