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The Inevitable Doom Of Wrong
"The kingdom of Satan will certainly fall before the kingdom of Christ, error before truth, profaneness before godliness, and corruption before grace in the hearts of the faithful." - Matthew Henry
"Shall the ark, the symbol of God's presence, be a prisoner to Dagon, a dunghill deity?"
- Matthew Henry
As we look upon our world today, we find many "dunghill deities" as Pastor Henry termed "Dagon" - the principal deity of the Philistines. There are governments...political agendas...religious beliefs...entertainment figures...corruptions in the marketplace...ungodliness in the educational institutions...as well as personal, mental, financial, marital, or family strongholds which can be classified as "Dagons."
Whatever they are - we may try to vote them out...oppose them with all our effort, arguments, or monies...or counsel them out - but they will not be defeated until they come face-to-face with the Presence of the Lord Jesus.
Let's look at 1 Samuel 5:1-5 and see what happened when "Dagon" met with the Lord God of Israel at Ashdod -
"And the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Ebenezer unto Ashdod. When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon. And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again. And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the LORD; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him. Therefore neither the priests of Dagon, nor any that come into Dagon's house, tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod unto this day."
"The glory was departed from Israel"(1 Samuel 4:22) because of sin - sin in the leadership among the sons of Eli. The "ark of God" - which represented the Presence of Almighty God in their midst - was taken by the Philistines and brought to their camp in Ashdod - one of their five principalities or most famous cities. In fact, it was considered to be the Philistine capital.
It was customary in all nations to take the spoils of victory gotten in battle and dedicate them to their gods as a thanksgiving offering for the help which they supposedly furnished. By way of reproach and insult to the God of Israel, they brought the "ark of God" into the temple dedicated to "Dagon" and set it before him - as if to minister to or serve him.
Can you imagine what a disgrace this was to the Throne of God's Glory to be placed before this "dunghill deity" as a trophy of victory over their enemy?
The Philistines were in for a shock of their lives! They didn't realize Who or What they were dealing with when they captured the "ark of God."
The following morning, they went to the temple - both priests and people. The priests came to sacrifice their morning offerings and the people came early to pay devotions to their idol before they went on with their daily business. Much to their amazement, they found "Dagon" lying on his face before the "ark of God" - as if to give adoration to Him...to show that he was subject to Him...owing that He was above him...or to express the fact that Israel's God had superior power.
The Philistines were too blinded by the devil to see what was actually going on here. They supposed "Dagon's" fall to be casual or merely accidental. They didn't get the point that Israel's God would not be worshipped with any god but above all gods!
Hence, they set "Dagon" up again as before and went about their business for the day.
The following morning, they went to the temple as before to give allegiance to their god and found the strangest sight imaginable. This time "Dagon" was not lying prostrate before the "ark of God" or the Presence of the Almighty. No, this time he was laying in complete mutilation on the ground - as if violently cast down. His head and hands were cut off and thrust upon the threshold - to be trodden upon by any one who entered the house. The significance of this act was to show that "Dagon" had neither wisdom nor power to defend himself against the majesty of Jehovah - the God of the Israelites. He was shown to be a deity who was very impotent and not worthy to be prayed to or trusted in.
This turn of events also proved that all who set themselves in opposition to the One True and Living God meet a terrible end. All that was left to "Dagon" was an ugly stump in the shape of a fish. Some commentators believe that he was half woman and half fish - like that of a mermaid. Others picture him as being a bearded man wearing a crown - who from the waist down had the shape of a fish. Either way - he was totally disgraced and brought to absolute contempt before the Holy One of Israel.
This brings us to our message today.
Job 20:5 says - "That the triumphing of the wicked is short..." What this means is that the shouting or rejoicing of the heathen is soon over. It is the kind of shouting that one would make after a victory or at the close of a harvest. Their occasion for rejoicing will be brief - but for a moment. That of which they make their boast - their outward prosperity and felicity - that in which they glory and triumph for a while - will soon come to an end.
There are other Scriptures to back up this concept -
Job 18:5 says - "Yea, the light of the wicked shall be put out, and the spark of his fire shall not shine. The light shall be dark in his tabernacle, and his candle shall be put out with him."
Psalm 37:35-36 says - "I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green bay tree. Yet he passed away, and, lo, he was not: yea, I sought him, but he could not be found."
There are many "Dagons" in our world today who feel as though God should bow down to them in their ungodly agendas. They certainly have no fear of Him nor any true concept of who He is.
They may go on for a time and challenge the Almighty with their arrogance and rebellion, but just as "Dagon" met his defeat, even so will they. What will bring this about is a move of God where His Mighty Presence is manifested. It is His Presence alone that can bring the "Dagons" of our society to their knees and totally destroy their assignments and plans against His kingdom and His church.
The necessity for a move of God or Revival in the land is not an option any more. It is a matter of desperation.
We - as the Church - have our mandate laid out for us in 2 Chronicles 7:14 which says - "If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."
Let's not forget that this verse doesn't just mention prayer - but also humility and repentance. It talks about living holy before the Lord.
We - as the Church - can pray all day and night, but God will not move until we - as a corporate body - come back to holiness - holiness of living and preaching.
There are "Dagons" in your life today.
What are you going to do about them?
We suggest that you cry out for the Presence of the Lord to invade your life, home, business, workplace, ministry, church, school, and nation.
In His Presence, every "Dagon" is mutilated! Praise His Holy Name!
May God Bless His Word.