The LORD may not be your Lord

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. 
When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.”
2 Aaron answered them, “Take off the gold earrings that your wives, your sons and your daughters are wearing, and bring them to me.” 3 So all the people took off their earrings and brought them to Aaron. 4 He took what they handed him and made it into an idol cast in the shape of a calf, fashioning it with a tool. Then they said, “These are your gods, y Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.”
5 When Aaron saw this, he built an altar in front of the calf and announced, “Tomorrow there will be a festival to the LORD .” 6 So the next day the people rose early and sacrificed burnt offerings and presented fellowship offerings. Afterward they sat down to eat and drink and got up to indulge in revelry.  - Ex 32:1–6.

One interesting thing to take note of the episode when Israel made itself a golden calf while Moses was given the Laws of the Covenant is that the golden calf was given the name "the LORD" which is Yahweh in Hebrew. The message however, when we read what really transpired, is clear - that not everything that we pronounced as the Lord's or name as God is really God.

By extension, this means that not everything that we do in the name of God is really a worship to God. Not everything that we do really pleases God if it is not an appropriate act of worship. History shows us that we can worship the wrong god even though it bears the same name as the LORD.

Implication wise, firstly, this means that we need to know the very nature of God. There is no other way as this is the only way for us to tell apart the counterfeit. To really worship God is to really know His nature and act accordingly to His nature. So then, I ask myself, do I really know His nature and act accordingly to His nature? Again, do my actions show that I believe what I confess and do my actions show my belief that God is really who He is?

Secondly, it is a call for us to watch our acts of worship that we deem for God. I sometimes feel that in the midst of making our worship relevant to the people today, we have done much to distract ourselves from real worship. One of my pet peeves is that we use too much flashing lights in service and this distract people from the presence of God (or at least distract me though I know I'm not the only one who feels this way). In that very case, are we then really worshiping a golden calf thinking that it is God rather than worshiping God Himself, when we place too much emphasis on such stuff?

Thirdly, there is a risk that we sometimes substitute God for other stuff when God seemingly takes too long in His seemingly long absence. The Israelites waited for 40 days and couldn't wait any longer and decided to change god. Likewise, when we wait too long and there is no answer, do we have the tendency to start looking at other stuff as the substitute for our security? If I dun get my job situation settled within this two months, do I then look elsewhere rather than placing my trust in God who may be seen as not doing anything in the situations?


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