October 7, 2020
Why? What are you thinking? These two questions come up frequently when we look at the actions of the Israelite’s. These are the same questions I ask my children. When one of them has a scissors going after our leather couch. When one of them sneaks the computer into their room to play Roblox for the millionth time. When I get a phone call from school saying the locker room was found in disarray after one my children had been in that locker room.
There are questions I ask myself about my own actions. Why do I eat a bag of potato chips instead of a couple vegetables? Why do I get mad at my kids when they are just living and being kids? Why do I, during the long hours of spring, resent my husband’s job that pays the bills. Why? What am I thinking?
All of them have the same answer. We are sinful. We see ourselves in charge of our lives. We think we know what is best and the best way to get there. We think we know what is best for our lives. We want to be in charge. We want to know it all just as Adam and Eve wanted all the knowledge
We feel that pull back to slavery. Back to the confines. Back to the walls we can see and feel. Back to the things we rely on to protect us. Back to things we can do to ensure our safety, well being, and prosperity. We are pulled toward the things that make us feel good. We are enticed by having all the answers.
The things we want to go back to are lesser than what we have as heirs, however. As Paul says those things by nature are not gods. That bag of potato chips, knowing what it feels like when a scissors cuts a leather couch, the computer screen with the colorful and enchanting games, doing what everyone else is doing so we please others, and the list goes on and on and on….
God’s people wanted to go back to what they knew after they were released from slavery under Pharaoh. They complained to Moses about not having the good food they had in slavery. They wanted the comforts of their former home.
This was not the only time they desired to dive head-long back into slavery. When Moses goes to receive the 10 commandments from God, he is gone for longer than they expected. They begin looking for something else to worship. They look for something to give credit to for what they have. They look for someone to appease.
They create a golden calf from the gold God gave them as they left Egypt and attributed their release from slavery to this statue of their own creation…
Once again…Why? What were they thinking? Why would they worship something they created with their own hands? Why would they give credit for their release from slavery from this calf? Why? What were they thinking?
We may not know what we are thinking, but the reasons for diving head long back into slavery is the same. We all want to be our own god. We all break the very first commandment of “You shall have no other gods.”
The very first commandment is “You shall have no other gods.” What does that mean for our lives? It means anything we put our hope in other than God enslaves us. It may be our own supposed obedience, it could be a bag of potato chips, it could be being liked by others around us, or so many other things.
The great news is that Christ has fulfilled all of the law for us. We will dive and fall headlong into slavery yet God opens our eyes to our sin and invites us back to Himself. We get to confess what we are fearing, loving, and trusting in more than God. Our relationship with Christ remains intact.
n what areas of your life are you drawn back into slavery? And what are you slave to? Your own obedience, food, opinions of others, self satisfaction, being right, self gratification??
How do those things become gods in your life?
Read Exodus 32. (Especially 32:13)
What Promise keeps God from removing the people?
Read 2 Corinthians 6:16 and Hebrews 8 (especially verse 10)
What do these verses say about keeping the first commandment?