A different side of idolatry

This is a series of reflections that I sent to my fiancee from my own Bible readings. I have posted them in this blog so that it is easier to keep track for future reflections. 
4 “ ‘Do not turn to idols or make metal gods for yourselves. I am the LORD your God. - Le 19:4
Idolatry, one of the ten commandments and it got repeated here in Leviticus. As I was reading this verse, the self-identification of God after the command struck me. We do not turn to idols or make metal gods for ourselves, He is the LORD our God

Implicitly or explicitly, depending whether we catch the relationship, is that God established His relationship with the Israelites as their God and He even gave them His name so that they will not mistake or confuse Him with other gods. There is no excuse therefore for people who will be making metal gods or idols thinking that they are indeed worshiping Yahweh, the God who brought them out. It was similar to the incident of the golden calf.

What does this teach us then? Firstly, I think it says a lot about God's demand for devotion to Him. He does not want us to worship other gods or be distracted by other stuff which will draw our devotion away from Him. What are the stuff which draws our devotions away from Him? For me, I think it's my devotion to my football stuff... it draws as much passion as the amount I would put into my bible studies... maybe even more. That's why I refrain from watching those matches.

Secondly, how do we fully devote ourselves to the God who has revealed Himself and His characters in the Scripture? As I asked this question, I found it interesting to note that God seems to be repeating the phrase "I am the LORD your God" after every few regulations that He stated, as if He has a point to drive across. Perhaps, for the Israelites, following these regulations wholeheartedly would mean putting God first (though we know if it does not fully represent the heart posture). I somehow suspect that God is concurrently reminding the Israelites (considering that Leviticus is part of the Pentateuch, which is a larger narrative of how the nation of Israel came to being) that He is the God who has chosen them, the Yahweh who brought them out of Egypt and hence to follow Him is to obey His commandments and be set apart for Him. This is an implicit call for gratitude and perhaps one implication is really how we show our gratitude to God in our heart postures and actions.


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