Monday, August 25, 2014

False gods: A Journey Through Samuel

1 Samuel 5

Idolatry is a sin and theme we see illustrated in Scripture repeatedly. Even God's chosen people have used the ark as an idol as we previously have seen by seeing it as an object of protection, and missing the One to for Whom it was created. While sacred and a gift, it still was a mere dwelling place. It was only sacred because of Who it was for ...

Yet, God did dwell there, and this stark difference is seen in this almost humorous passage of Scripture:
Then the Philistines took the ark of God and brought it into the house of Dagon and set it up beside Dagon. And when the people of Ashdod rose early the next day, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the LORD. So they took Dagon and put him back in his place. But when they rose early on the next morning, behold, Dagon had fallen face downward on the ground before the ark of the LORD, and the head of Dagon and both his hands were lying cut off on the threshold. Only the trunk of Dagon was left to him. (1 Samuel 5:2-4 ESV)

There is nothing that shall reign supreme over our Lord; especially something that is worshiped. While we could go into some of the history behind Dagon, the threshold, and people during that time, the point simply remains that God will make a mockery of anything that tries to mock Him.

As Isaiah points out, individuals can even make a mockery of themselves by treating these objects as gods to begin with:
He cuts down cedars, or he chooses a cypress tree or an oak and lets it grow strong among the trees of the forest. He plants a cedar and the rain nourishes it. Then it becomes fuel for a man. He takes a part of it and warms himself; he kindles a fire and bakes bread. Also he makes a god and worships it; he makes it an idol and falls down before it. Half of it he burns in the fire. Over the half he eats meat; he roasts it and is satisfied. Also he warms himself and says, “Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire!” And the rest of it he makes into a god, his idol, and falls down to it and worships it. He prays to it and says, “Deliver me, for you are my god!" (Isaiah 44:14-17 ESV)
Deliver me [piece of wood] ... you are my god!

A King ... (chess piece that is)

Ridiculous, but sadly apt for today as well. Deliverance, release, and rescue. My life will be better if I am delivered from what? Deliver me doctor! Deliver me friend! Deliver me judge! Deliver me Mr. President! Deliver me spouse! Deliver me job! Deliver me temptation! Deliver me retirement! Deliver me ... deliver me ... deliver me ...

God delivers; He alone. Jesus.

How often do we see peace, joy, harmony, contentment, just around the corner. After "this" then I will be able to relax and enjoy life more. That thought is destructive to ourselves, our family, our friends, and ultimately and most importantly our relationship with the Lord. It is sin.

May we learn more each day to rest in Him, trust in Him, and let loose this bondage we call control. It's a false god that promises but will never deliver, because only One can.

His,
~Matthew

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