Journey Through The Bible Hero

FEBRUARY 12, 2021 DEVOTION

Exodus 34:1 – 35:9, Matthew 27:15-31, Psalm 33:12-22, Proverbs 9:1-6

The Lord – “You must worship no other gods, but only the Lord, for He is a God who is passionate about His relationship with you.” (Exodus 34:14 NLT)

In the verse prior to Exodus 34:14, the Lord said, “You must break down their pagan altars, smash the sacred pillars they worship, and cut down their carved images” (Exodus 34:13). Most Christians today would say that they have no problems with that commandment. After all, most of us don’t have idols or statues in our homes (or yards) that we bow before or pay homage to. That first phrase in Exodus 34:14 where God said, “You must worship no other gods, but only the Lord” still causes us trouble, however.

Question – “What gods other than the Lord have you worshipped in your life?” Many people in our day have worshipped the god of hedonism. Hedonism is an ungodly desire for pleasure that leads us to put even “acceptable” pursuits of pleasure before our desire for or commitment to the Lord. It is characterized by the phrase, “life is short, so go for the gusto.” Hedonism manifests itself oftentimes in possessions we have that facilitate our pleasure (i.e. boats, golf clubs, etc.). There is nothing wrong with these types of pleasures – unless they’re more important than the Lord in our lives. That’s when they become gods to us. Hedonism also manifests itself in ungodly relationships and activities such as involvement in pornography or sex outside of marriage. When we’re involved in such activities or relationships we are saying that they are more important to us than the Lord – thus making them gods in our lives.

Many people in our day worship the god of materialism. Materialism is an ungodly desire for possessions that leads us to put acquiring, having and owning possessions before our desire for or commitment to the Lord. There is nothing wrong with having a beautiful home, plenty of money in the bank, an abundance of accessories, clothes, appliances, etc., unless we prioritize them over being faithful to the Lord. Then they become gods in our lives.

Many people in our day also worship the god of humanism. Humanism occurs when man places himself at the center of his universe rather than the Lord. Humanism manifests itself in selfishness, self-centeredness, extreme pride – specifically putting ourselves before the Lord. Like the other “gods,” it can involve acceptable and reasonable focuses similar to the pursuit of education or a better career. There is nothing wrong with those pursuits unless they become more important to us than loving and living for the Lord.

Question – “Are there any gods in your life other than the Lord?” The Lord says in the first of the 10 Commandments (Exodus 20:1-3) and in today’s text that we are to have no other gods before Him. Then He tells us why He’s issued that commandment. He says, “For He is a God who is passionate about His relationship with you” (Exodus 34:14). In other words, God wants me to be passionate about Him, and wants me to put Him first in my life as my “God” because He is passionate about me, and has prioritized me. That makes sense to me – and makes me want to make Him “the God” in my life.

As you pray today: 1) Determine if there are any “gods” in your life that are before the Lord, and if there are, repent and ask the Lord to forgive you and to take first place in your life; 2) Ask the Lord to show you how to be passionate in your relationship with Him and to empower you daily to keep Him first in your life; and 3) Ask the Lord (as the God of your life) to provide you with His daily direction and supernatural provision and protection. You will never regret prioritizing the Lord in your life. Jesus said, “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these other things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33). When the Lord is first in our lives – everything else falls into place.