Whenever I am due to prepare a message, I spend some time in prayerful contemplation seeking the Lord for His leading. Sometimes His instruction is very clear, other times, not so. And other times still, although His direction is obvious, it makes little sense to me. On such occasions, I understand that there is something He wants to reveal to me, but that He wants me to ‘dig’ for myself to find it.
To be very honest with you, there are times when I put off the exercise of digging, not to test the Lord you understand, but to test myself in order to see if the direction is from Him or my own imaginings. When it won’t leave me and keeps coming back to mind, I understand that it is Him and eventually I begin the process.
Now all of this I share with you because quite often the way in which He leads me, is with a single word or simple phrase. Sometimes, it is so simple that I have no idea how a message can possibly flow from it. Moreover, in human vanity, it concerns me that in its simplicity, even my own little congregation will think it childish. However, often times, it leads me on a wonderful adventure of discovery in order to discover things previously undiscovered by me. And the series we shall embark on from Sunday (24th May 2020), is such a journey. Although I do not know where we shall end up, I am trusting the Lord it will be somewhere beneficial for us, for He keeps saying to me, simply “honey”. Therefore, our new series will be entitled “Sweeter Than Honey”.
Verse 103 of Psalm 119 says this: -
“How sweet are Your words to my taste. Sweeter than honey to my mouth”.
And psalm 19 verses 7 to 10: -
“The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; 8 The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; 9 The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. 10 More to be desired are they than gold, Yea, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.
Therefore, on first reading we discover two fundamental things. Firstly, that on several occasions throughout the Scriptures, honey is used in the natural to represent something else in the spiritual. And secondly, on face value, it represents the word of God and His law, His testimony, His statutes, His commandments, the fear of the Lord and His true and righteous judgments… these things we are informed, are to be desired more than much fine gold and are sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.
And for a moment, consider the way in which the Scriptures now introduce not only the honey, but also the honeycomb which contains the honey… because to the early church fathers and according to their writings, the honey contained within the honeycomb became a picture of the sweetness of Christ contained within Old Testament prophecy. Therefore, given that the Old Testament contains much prophetic revelation concerning the Christ who was to come, there is little wonder that Ezekiel was told to eat the scrolls… Ezekiel chapter 3 verse 1 to 3
Moreover, He said to me, “Son of man, eat what you find; eat this scroll, and go, speak to the house of Israel.” 2 So I opened my mouth, and He caused me to eat that scroll. 3 And He said to me, “Son of man, feed your belly, and fill your stomach with this scroll that I give you.” So, I ate, and it was in my mouth like honey in sweetness.
Christ is the honey and Biblical prophecy in which Christ is contained is the honeycomb! In the 24th chapter of Luke’s gospel, we read of events following the resurrection of Christ. Some of His disciples were heartbroken and grief stricken at His death but had somehow missed the prophetic pointers that the Christ would die and rise again. And it was on the road to Emmaus He said to them: -
“O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?” 27 And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.
Later when appearing to the gathering of His disciples, He ate with them… and we note that He ate of broiled fish and some honeycomb. And having eaten of the honeycomb He said to them: -
“These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.”
Understanding that Christ is the honey contained within the prophetic written word, which is the honeycomb, is an excellent starting point for our series ‘Sweeter Than Honey’. And as we progress through Sunday’s message, I shall turn our attention to Judges 4 and one who produces honeycomb… Deborah the prophetess and Judge of Israel, who’s name means “the bee”.
Therefore, if you have ever read the narrative of Judges 4 and wonder how it is Christ is revealed in the story of Deborah, listen out for Sunday’s message, which I pray may be a blessing to you.
May God bless you and keep you always.