“What right do my beloved people have to come to My Temple, when they have done so many immoral things? Can their vows and sacrifices prevent their destruction?
~Jeremiah 11:15, NLT
“There is no avoiding the fact that we live at the mercy of our ideas. This is never more true than with our ideas about God.”
Jeremiah has a lot to say about the stupidity of worshiping idols. First of all, they are the creation of man and can never exceed his imagination or power. Matter of fact, idols are far more impotent than men. Jeremiah reminds us that they have to be nailed down to keep toppling over and they have to be carried because they cannot walk. Actually, they are inanimate objects that cannot do anything but sit and collect dust. So why was paganism such a huge temptation for the Jews? There are several reasons and I am sure I will not mention them all but I will share a couple.
In all pagan worship, there is the idea of appeasement and this appeals to our since of pride. What does it mean to ‘appease’? Appeasing is to pacify or placate (someone) by acceding to their demands or to their desires. I’m sure I have told you about the husband who felt guilty about flirting with a woman at work so he stopped by the florist and ordered a dozen red roses for his wife. He got to feeling so guilty that he asks his boss if he could go home after lunch. So he rings the door bell in the middle of the day and hands his wife a dozen red roses. She said, “That’s just great: the washer is leaking, the school called because the kids are sick and now you come home in the middle of the day drunk.” All the pagan gods could be appeased with sacrifices, offerings and rituals. Yahweh is different: no offering you and I bring can appease Him. This is what upset Cain. The Jews were so twisted in their thinking that they were treating Yahweh like one of the pagan gods. Joe David alluded to this yesterday: you cannot appease God. There is not offering you can present that will appease Him.
A second thing about idol worship and this is big: none of the pagan gods demanded morality, virtue or justice. Once you placated your god with your religious observance, you were free to do whatever you liked. The brazen seductress in Proverbs seven says to the young man she is seducing...”Today I have fulfilled my vows, and I have food left from my fellowship offering.” She is just getting home from church, so to speak, and her husband is away on a business trip: she now justifies her adultery by telling him she has fulfilled her religious obligations. Yahweh, the One true God, makes all the rules: you and I do not have a say–what He says goes and nothing in his word is negotiable. Man in his rebellion does not want to be told what to do, so he creates a god that he can control and manipulate. The Jews never stopped being religious: they simply stopped obeying Yahweh the true God.
Don’t kid yourself; secular humanism is a god. John Dewey believed is a god, just not the Living God. Secular humanism makes man the center or the god, which is pathetic. They are more religious than you or I; they just do not worship the same God. They hate Jesus in part because He is the acceptable offering: the only acceptable offering. They think just like Cain: “The fruit of my labor is as good as the blood of the Lamb.” You and I know–they are mistaken.
DRIVE-IN CHURCH Big Hit!
I want to thank Josh Melson for his expertise in sound equipment and devices: he is the man who sets us up so that we can do the FaceBook live, Drive-In Church, etc. By the way, he has a camera ordered and GP will be airing the Sunday am service in the future. Our broadcast my be delayed but I will get back to you on a time. Believe it or not, I did not worry one minute about the weather. I simply prayed for God’s will to be done but the weather was good. It started to sprinkle at the very end. The wind was hard on our little sound system but we made it and I want to Praise the LORD Jesus for His mercy and grace. Our people honk louder than they sing. They get an A+ on honking for Jesus. All but two stopped and gave an offering: not that I am counting. Seriously, it was a good response. As I am finishing the blog, it is raining cats and dogs.
According to the Alabama Department of Health: Morgan County is holding at 37 reported cases. Limestone also reports 37 and Madison 187 while Lawrence reports only 8. The Moulton Walmart would be the place to go; it is a better store than Hartselle or Decatur anyway. Barring and exponential increase, I think we will be able to congregate by MOTHER’S DAY.
I have a tine problem: I’m in my building and want to go home–its coming a flood and I don’t have an umbrella.