Public health regulations today have similar concerns – pigs carry diseases and parasites that infect humans. Notice that God said: “don’t eat bats” 3,500 years ago. All carrion eaters can carry parasites and diseases from the dead animals they consume.
“You shall walk after the LORD your God and fear him and keep his commandments and obey his voice, and you shall serve him and hold fast to him.”
We read here just how serious God takes idolatry – Chasing after other gods, idols, putting something else in the place of God.
And as we read through God’s word we see that this rejection of God is what Israel did.
Moses here is at the end of his life, and even Joshua is not a young man by this point.
Further on in Judges we read that immediately following Joshua’s death Israel abandons the Lord and goes after other Gods (Judges 2:12-17).
Not even a generation went past before they jumped the fence onto the broad road. And this was the generation who saw God’s conquering power going before them, ridding the land of the enemies of God.
Throughout the reign of the kings in both kingdoms we read of the decay, the downward spiral. Even when a king arises who turns back (and so the people do too) to the Lord, most often we read,
“Nevertheless, the high places were not taken away.”
And when you boil it down, this is the key issue we face. The root of our sin. The trouble of all mankind.
“Have no other gods but ME.”
We struggle with this. It is a hard word. Because the world entices. It calls out and softens the blow with a little sweet word or a sympathising ear.
How often do we find our lives taken up with other things?
How often do we find ourselves at odds with the Lord because we’re heading away from the narrow way, down our own track (all roads such are just the same broad way to destruction)?
Wilfulness can very easily become idolatry, as can working hard. So can taking time out, sport, exercise, food.
We desperately need the Holy Spirit to be working in us, pointing us back to the Lord. We need Jesus’ saving power at work in us each day. We need to remember the Lord!
More of Jesus, less of us. More of His grace and mercy, less of our pride and ambition.
* Dear Lord God,
You are the great omnipotent God, in whom we trust. You are the first and the last, the beginning and the end.
And You call on us Your people to be singular in our faith. You fiercely and jealously call us, there are no other gods before You!
Please help us to be a faithful people, together in our church families, our own families and on our own as individual people seeking You.
Thank You for saving us Lord.