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Dr. Richard Van Heukelum | Phoenix, Arizona
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Dan – Living Far From God
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 15, 2014
Posted by: Word for the World | more..
91,520+ views | 1,600+ clicks
The sign says “Tel Dan”.

Initially I think Tell Dan What? Then I realize its not Tell but Tel and a Tel is an archaeological site. We’re approaching the archaeological site of the city of Dan.

As we leave the bus, we face the remains of the city’s ancient walls. The huge stones cause us to wonder how they build it. Inspecting the gate complex we notice seats carved in the stone and the guide tells us the city elders probably sat there to judge.

As we wander this site we will be reminded that Dan is where they were Living Far From God.

Geographically

At one point in our visit, we will see villages in the distance. Our guide will tell us these are in Lebanon. In reality, Dan has always been on the northern border of Israel. We will grasp why in scripture it often says “from Dan (far North) to Beersheba (far South)” – Judges 20:1 etc. Those in Dan were geographically Living Far From God.

Intentionally

At another point in our visit our guide seat us and read Judges 18. It records why Dan is in the far north. The tribe of Dan had been allotted land in the middle of Israel yet chose to find land to the north. Using military force, the tribe of Dan attacked this city and because the site was secluded “there was no deliverer” to come to their defense (Judges 18:28). Those in Dan were intentionally Living Far From God.

Religiously

We may wonder what was wrong with settling so far from God until our guide seats us in front of the remains of an altar. Initially Judges 18 comes to mind. There it is recorded that the tribe of Dan set up Micah’s carved image because the house of God was in Shiloh (Judges 18:31).

Yet the remains we look at are not from the period of Judges. We will need to read 1 Kings 12:26-33 to discover that when the nation of Israel split, Jeroboam the first king of the North set up golden calves in Dan and Bethel to keep people from going to Jerusalem to worship. Being geographically and intentionally distant from God led to Religiously distant from God.

Prophetically

Jeremiah 4:15 and 8:16 remind us that even the prophets understood Dan was Living Far From God and would therefore be where the enemy was first enter Israel on their way to Jerusalem.

Leaving Tel Dan, our minds will reflect on those who choose to Live Far From God. How natural for those who do not spend time in God’s House to wander away and find their own gods.

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