The backlash doesn't always come when we expect it. In fact, that is rare. Usually it lingers until we are quite off guard and then - Wham! That is why most people think that they are "alright with G-d", despite having many life habits that conflict with what they know to be true in Scripture. If they do not reap the consequences of their sin within 48 hours they erroneously assume that they have "gotten away with it". They conclude, wrongly, but stubbornly no less, that either G-d was not paying attention, or that He "must be okay with it". Wrong.
"Be sure your sins will find you out". We know this in principle, so how is it that we are usually surprised - and even dare to be "put out" - when our decisions eventually catch up with us? How can we be so quick to yell, "that's not fair!", over things that happen, without looking to see if our actions caused it? When, usually, if we could trace it all back to where it started, we would be able to see that we set the catastrophe in motion ourselves, and sensed we were doing it at the time! But we went head on into it, and sighed a big sigh of relief when the "wham" didn't come right away! Then, as time goes on, we forget about it! So, instead of repenting when calamity strikes, we want to mount a big counter attack, as though we have been unjustly assaulted! Or we ignorantly stand around in our self produced cloud of denial, looking like "Steve Urkle", astonished and asking, "Did I do that?!" That is, if we are clued in enough to even implicate ourselves in the whole thing!
We have all seen this denial in process - the 75 year old with 25% lung capacity, angry that "G-d could let this happen, after all those years of service to Him!" - while conveniently, completely, selectively, ignoring the 30+ years of smoking that caused this break down! That 50 year old with melanomas that keep popping up periodically, who doesn't factor in all those summers of "tanning" to stay vogue! The 40 year old who is already showing signs of osteoporosis, and is in utter denial about this being one of the true effects of anorexia. An eating disorder which exists from a decision made in bitterness - maybe from being teased as a child, or through the shame of an unpleasant, traumatic experience - but which has resulted in the decision to devote her life to being thinner than anyone else! This is to exact some kind of revenge! But now she realizes, too late, that the only one her revenge has hit is herself! The ravages of STD's from a perversely irresponsible sexual "revolution"! It was revolting alright! But now we are amazed and more than a bit offended at G-d! And want to rant about how a "loving G-d would never allow this kind of thing!" etc. etc. When His Word clearly warns us about abusing this very specific and holy intimacy for fleshly exploitation!
This nation's real estate is being eaten alive by medical facilities! And while the "life expectancy" has grown longer, the quality of life has definitely diminished. Depression and other mental/emotional illness spawns a host of physical illnesses as people spiral downward on a hell-been sliding board of flesh driven addictions and cravings! As a result it has come to this, we fear life and we fear death and so we hover in an unnatural state of dis-ease, between them! We eat whatever we crave, refuse to exercise or put ourselves out for anything, or else exercise to exalt ourselves, we ping-pong back and forth between rigid compliance to rules and regulations and complete ignorance of them or disregard for them - and then complain that life has no zest or direction! We ignore G-d, then whine because He doesn't burst into our lives like some super-hero and save us from all the consequences of our selective self-limitations!
There are many examples of the kind of disconnect which I see all the time in folks, I have listed only a few. Many people these days think they are "living for G-d" and therefore can not be "touched by the enemy". But then find themselves overwhelmed, angry and disillusioned by some disastrous consequence, not realizing that it is the direct result of an action, or actions, for which they have never taken responsibility, for which they have never repented! They do not connect the action to this consequence however, because the consequence was so long in coming! In denial, they fail to acknowledge that the current disaster is "payback" for something that they decided to do, against the knowledge of what is right, for which they have never truly repented! Actions which they have dismissed as "no big deal", but for which the pay check always comes eventually! We do not "get off scott-free"! We do not get to just skip over the consequences of sin!
Of course there is forgiveness with the Lord! But what we seem to have forgotten is that the process of obtaining that forgiveness involves repenting of, and turning from, that which we needed forgiveness for - and not just sweeping it under some imaginary rug, trying to pretend that it never happened! Sins will be accounted for, either now or later. In the judgment of the world they will all be called out into the open for all to see. Except those that were plunged beneath the blood of the Lamb of G-d! And even then, in this realm, in His mercy, He sometimes allows us to reap at least part of the crop, so that we can remember the bitterness of those fruits and not sow more seeds of that species! He wants purity from His people, Holiness! He wants us re-made into His image, which was marred in the infamous Garden!
For those of us involved in worship and the learning of Spiritual precepts from a Jewish (not western) perspective, (whether cognitively and purposely because we have seen the error of western ways, or incidentally because we are following the Ruach Ha Kodesh) we seem to be in an extended period of introspection on these types of issues. I think this is because we are running out of time! I mean, did anyone else get the memo that Messiah is returning, possibly very soon, and that when He does He will be looking for a Bride who is "without spot or blemish"? He will be looking for His Bride, the one that drank the cup with Him, the one that has submitted herself to the purification process, and therefore has become Holy and not Profane! The One that has been made perfect, as He is perfect. The One that has prepared, by walking in unity with His Spirit and is therefore alert to His coming, as she is waiting for his arrival with passionate anticipation!
Not all who got the invitation, nor even all who seemed to accept it will be going with Him when He comes. He made it plain that the slovenly ones, who are rolling around, fleshing out, and wasting time, because He didn't show up when she thought He should would miss out on the deal! That one's lamp is going out, and she has not made provision to have extra oil on hand - should He surprise her, which she already knows He is planning to do, by the way! Still, she is so not paying attention! When He comes, as the analogy goes, she will be out shopping for oil, a day late and a dollar short! Notice in the parable, the ones who were prepared did not do the "nice Christian thing", and give their extra oil to these lazy ones who came unprepared! Not a drop! They said, "Hey! Go get your own oil!" I mean, really, there are some things that others just can not do for us! You know? There is a significant lesson here about real Scriptural boundaries, but that is another writing.
But the point is that we need to do whatever it takes to jerk ourselves awake to the season we are in! Play time is over! Night is swiftly and inevitably coming. We must work in the dusky daylight we have left! The "Church Age" is coming to an end, and like Yeshua said, all those who call after me, "Lord, Lord" will not necessarily make it into His Kingdom! But those who do the will of the Father! What is His will? What exactly does He want from us anyway!? Yeshua reiterated it to us, He said this a lot..."It IS WRITTEN"! What was Written? Torah! He has given us instructions in the Torah! Then He sent prophets to preach it, a whole five-fold ministry to teach it, and Yeshua to demonstrate what it should look like! He has left the Ruach to guide us in it, and to minister the Anointing that moves burdens and destroys yokes, to set us free to choose, to obey! But still, we must choose!
We can be sure that whatever seed which we are choosing and sowing will come up. And we are in the days when it seems to come up much sooner than it used to, despite the delay of which I wrote. I personally believe that the judgment has begun, especially, as He promised, with the house of G-d! So as we go about our daily lives we need to ask ourselves and be aware, what are we planting? Are we planting His Word in our hearts so that it will grow and produce His fruit in us, or are we just sowing whatever seed floats by that looks good to us?
Are we sowing seeds of nutritious food into our bodies, and water, that we have trusted Him to bless, so that we can be healthy and in shape to do His will? Or are we taking the easy way out time and again, just caving into the fleshly appetites - making the choices of lazy bums, but expecting the body of champions? Are we exercising, working hard to keep these bodies in ultimate shape, for His uses, or - if we are actually working out, is it more for our own glory - to attract the attention or admiration of others? Because the heart motivation behind what we do - or say - or think - matters more than our outward actions anyway, according to Rav Yeshua's standards! Remember that He said, "Except your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and pharisees...."! Oy vey!
Again, we do not get away with sin. It will find us, and like a carelessly thrown boomerang, will hit us square in the back of the head, leaving us reeling and gasping for air, wondering, "what the....?!" And then comes the uneasy realization, "oh, yeah...I think I remember throwing that...". Do we really want to wait for the crop to come up and have to deal with all that rotten fruit? The act of true heartfelt repentance will drastically reduce, if not entirely eliminate the amount of disaster that one must reap!
This is a time of Teshuvah, a time when the grace for repentance is still with us, a time to turn from whatever it is that you know you should not be doing, or maybe have stopped doing due to health issues but have never repented of! It is a time to turn from our own wicked ways, judging them according to His standards instead of ours, and to be changed into His righteousness! The time is now. Procrastinators may find themselves shut out of the party - the same one that you have been invited to! Even if you have RSVP-d! But we must have also done the work needed to be prepared when the Bridegroom comes! We must have our lamps full of oil, trimmed, and ready to meet Him! We must have our sins cleansed away, and our hearts pure for Him!
We can, of course, choose to stubbornly stay in our sin, or continue to excuse it or pretend that it doesn't exist. We can choose to wallow in the ease of fleshly denial until the gate slams shut. But that is not a recommendation that I would endorse! We can choose to believe that we are smart enough to get around G-d's system, and that His boundaries are for everyone else, or that we are so high and mighty that we have exempted ourselves from that standard - but I urge you not to buy into that pride-trap! We can choose stupid over righteous if we want to. It is our choice. However, a day is soon coming when there will be no more time for choosing. Therefore, if you feel that your current choice is not one which you want to "lock in" for eternity, then you may want to be about making some different choices while there is still time. But If, you think that you are okay, simply because the consequences of your sin have not caught up with you yet just - - - - - "Wait - for - it...." And when it comes, and trust me, it will, you know what to do next.