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Did God Give You That Burden You Are Bearing?
Burdens. The Bible speaks much of them.
There are those that need to be shared with others, and then again, there are those that need to be carried alone.
Some are God-given, while others are man-inspired.
In this message, we would like to examine five different types of Burdens found in the Scriptures. We guarantee that God will speak to your heart through one of them.
1. Over-Doing in Well-Doing
Exodus 18:18 says - "Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone."
Deuteronomy 1:9 & 12 says - "And I spake unto you at that time, saying, I am not able to bear you myself alone...How can I myself alone bear your cumbrance, and your burden, and your strife?"
This particular burden deals with the person who overtasks himself with that which is beyond his own strength. He tries to do a job all alone. Soon, he finds himself "wearing away" - while being totally exhausted and fatigued through the work.
In the Scriptures, we find Moses from morning to evening judging the people's "matters" or problems. Exodus 18:14 & 17-18 relates how God sent his Father-in-law to him with a word from the Lord - "...What is this thing that thou doest to the people? why sittest thou thyself alone, and all the people stand by thee from morning unto even?...The thing that thou doest is not good. Thou wilt surely wear away...for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone."
Like Moses, are you finding that the work that God called you to do is very demanding and taxing? Are you guilty of over-doing in well-doing?
Have you ever considered that He is wanting to raise up others to help you? You cannot do this work alone.
The Holy Spirit is saying to you this day - "The thing that thou doest is not good. Thou wilt surely wear away...for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone."
Perhaps you think that no one is capable of doing the job quite like you. Be assured of this one thing - God can supply "able" men and women who "fear God" - men and women of truth who hate covetousness(Exodus 18:21) - to help you carry your heavy burden.
2. The Unbearable Burden
Numbers 11:11,14, 17 says - "And Moses said unto the LORD, Wherefore hast Thou afflicted Thy servant? and wherefore have I not found favour in Thy sight, that Thou layest the burden of all this people upon me?...I am not able to bear all this people alone, because it is too heavy for me...And I will come down and talk with thee there: and I will take of the spirit which is upon thee, and will put it upon them, and they shall bear the burden of the people with thee, that thou bear it not thyself alone."
This burden is unlike the first one. It's not that you need help in carrying out a certain task. You have all the help you need in Christ Jesus, but you are not availing yourself of it. You are allowing your circumstances and the people around you to rob you of your value and the sense of obligation to the Call of God on your life.
In Numbers 11, we see the Children of Israel complaining...lusting for "flesh to eat" because they were tired of the manna...and weeping as they remember the "treasures" or "good food" of Egypt where they were slaves. Because he allowed the "mixt multitude" to get the best of him, Moses became exasperated and deeply distressed and began to complain before the Lord - "Wherefore...wherefore...that Thou layest the burden of all this people upon me?" What he was actually saying was - "Why me, O Lord? Why did You pick me for this task?"
Numbers 11:14 reveals the condition of his heart as he speaks - "I am not able to bear all this people alone, because it is too heavy for me." He lost sight of God's call and divine commission to perform the task ahead of him. It was the Almighty Who appointed him and would surely equip him and provide for him.
Like Moses, have you allowed the work that God has assigned for you to become a burden? Have you allowed the comments of people and the adverse circumstances to draw your focus from the source of your help - the Lord Jesus Christ? Have you found yourself undervaluing the mighty anointing and grace that He has placed upon you to accomplish the task? Have you forgotten that you have a duty before Him to finish what you started? He never would have asked you to do something that He would not enable you to do.
God didn't make a mistake when He selected you for the work you are facing. Be assured of it! You can accomplish whatever He assigns through His strength and power.
3. Religious Burdens
Luke 11:46 says - "And He said, Woe unto you also, ye lawyers! for ye lade men with burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the burdens with one of your fingers."
Acts 15:10 adds - "Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?"
This burden is man-inflicted and generally found among those who are in a position of authority. In Luke 11:46, we read Jesus' word of rebuke to the "lawyers" who "lade men with burdens grievous to be borne" and yet touched not the same "burdens" with one of their own fingers. In other words, they were reproved for insisting on strict religious observances of the traditions of the elders - while not adhering to them themselves. They imposed strict "hedges" around the people which they themselves did not follow.
In Acts 15:10, the Apostle Paul referred to these unbearable restraints as a "yoke" that was oppressive and burdensome.
Are you in a position of authority today? Do you find yourself "dishing out" orders to others that you yourself would never follow?
Some people love to order or control others. Are you one of them?
There are Pastors who place unnecessary restrictions on their congregations which God Himself is not requiring of them. There are Leaders who "strain at a gnat" when it comes to others but "swallow a camel"(Matthew 23:24) - so to speak - in their own lives. There are Parents who impose demands on their children, yet they themselves live "loose" and "easy."
4. Acceptable Burdens
Galatians 6:2 says - "Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ."
What is an Acceptable Burden?
It is one carried out by those who are - ...sympathetic toward the weaknesses of others...exercise forbearance and compassion towards those who are undergoing certain trials, temptations, and troubles...afford comfort, counsel, and aid to those who are struggling in their walk with the Lord...and bear with others who speak and act foolishly.
In order to be like Jesus, we must display love for our fellow man. This is the "law of Christ." And we are required to "fulfill" it.
So how do we react to a brother or sister who is struggling with a besetting sin? Do we judge and criticize them or instantly become burdened for them? Do we fast and pray for them until we see the work of grace accomplished in their lives that brings them the victory?
When we hear of people's troubles, do we turn a "deaf ear" to them or do we try to help as much as we possibly can?
Are we sympathetic and caring toward those who are struggling to "put one foot in front of the other" - so to speak? Are we willing - with the Word of God - to take the time to undergird them and pull them through a "dark" time in their lives?
There are just some people who simply "get on our nerves" or "rub" us the wrong way with their stupidity. Are we willing to especially pray fervently for these very "trying" types, or would we rather criticize and talk about them behind their backs?
5. The Word Of The Lord
Revelation 2:24 says - "But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, as many as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the depths of Satan, as they speak; I will put upon you none other burden."
Oftentimes, throughout the Scriptures, we find that the "Burden of the Lord" referred to a word of rebuke or correction. It usually was a prophecy threatening "heavy things" or sufferings about to fall upon the people.
In Revelation 2:18-29, we read the "word of the Lord" to the Church at Thyatira. There were those in their midst whom the Lord Jesus rebuked for adhering to Satanic delusions and devices called "the depths of Satan." These people intimated that they contained some sort of "deep knowledge" that was only known by a select few.
In Revelation 2:24, the Son of God addressed, however, those who remained faithful and hadn't received, embraced, or contaminated themselves with any such False doctrine or teaching. To them, He announced that there was no need for any further word of exhortation or correction.
What about your life? What about your walk with the Lord?
Have you kept yourself from the False Doctrines or Teachings of men? Have you rejected any "word of the Lord" that excuses sin or seeks to "widen the gate" and "broaden the way"? Have you taken the time to "search the Scriptures"(Acts 17:11) - like the Bereans, or have you "swallowed" the teachings of the Popular Preachers because everyone is following after them and buying their books and tapes?
Are you swept away by those who claim to have a "deeper knowledge" of God above others?
Or can it be said of you by the Lord Jesus - "...I will put upon you none other burden"? In other words, He has no word of rebuke or correction for you - just an encouragement to persevere in the way that you know is right according to the Scriptures.
Burdens. Burdens. Burdens.
Which ones are you carrying at this time?
Which ones do you need to lay down and which ones do you need to pick up?
Let the Lord speak to you this day. Whatever He says to you, do it.
May God Bless His Word.