This morning I am right back at my life as pastor. Eleven days with my family, including a new grandson, have spoiled me!
Entering into 2016 our church continues to walk through the MULTIPLY discipleship material. We are in the covenant between God and Israel this week and I have focused on Exodus 19 and 20. For my message, there is no way to walk through the 10 commandments successfully in one message, so I want to give some thoughts along the way this week through blogging.
2 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
3 “You shall have no other gods before me.” (Ex. 20:2-3, NIV)
Quite possibly the most difficult part of Exodus is trying to figure out how “law” and “love” go together. We might think of “law” and have in mind it is something to keep, or ignore, or break.
The temptation is to get quite “literal” and think, “Well, when it comes to other gods… I don’t have any idols in my house!”
How are we in relation to the other gods around us, though? In every culture we battle “gods” or “strongholds.” The three greatest strongholds in America: Money, Sex, Power. And there are hundreds of smaller “gods” attached to them. Consumerism. Greed. Violence. Racism.
What saves us from legalism is to be reminded that it is GOD who acted toward us. He delivered Israel. He delivered US. Out of that gratefulness should rise a heart that says, “GLADLY! I will serve no other!”
We are still tested with it every day, though. We like our own control. We like our material stuff. We like our daily habits that may be in conflict with pure worship.
The Lord will want to deal with those in our lives. Are we will willing to lay it all on the table FOR HIM?
What gods are getting in your way?