Judges 8:27 Worshipping The Blessing

Golden ephod

Gideon made the gold into an ephod, which he placed in Ophrah, his town. All Israel prostituted themselves by worshiping it there and it became a snare to Gideon and his family. Judges 8:26 

Getting a gift or blessing from someone or a group for something that was done extra is always a good thing. It shows a person that he is honored and his extra work is recognized.

Companies and organizations around the world will often have times of honoring those who do the work. They recognize people who have gone above and beyond their job or position. The honor can be one of many things, such as a plaque, gift of money, a gift card, a picture, name in a newsletter, an extra vacation, and nearly anything the mind can think of.

There is nothing wrong with getting honored with a gift. However, there are some people who worship that gift.

After Gideon had defeated the Midianites, the people had given him some of the gold from the plunder they had taken. This gold was melted down and made into an ephod. Immediately the people and Gideon started to worship that ephod. It was as though the ephod had saved them from the Midianites.

Not only do people in the world tend to worship the blessing that was given, there are people in the church who have done the same thing. They may not say it is God, but they talk about the honor given as though it is the best thing in all of life. They keep it clean and posted where everyone can see it, and they make sure that people see it.

This is taking the honor of what God has done away from Him. It is focusing on what self did. The blessing ends up being worshipped more than God.

Take a look at your own life. What honors have you received over the years? How do you respond to those honors?

Be careful to keep you eyes and focus upon God. When people talk about the honor or blessing, point them back to God as the one who helped you do what you did.

Do not allow the honor or the blessing take the throne of your life or anyone else’s life. Do not allow it to become a snare pulling you away from God.

Everyone deserves some honor, but keep it in the right perspective–God made it possible.

I pray today that you will recognize God’s work through you; that you will give God the honor due to Him; that you will not worship things or positions in your life; and that you will worship only God. 

2 John 8 Watch Out Or Lose

 

Soldier Watching

Watch out that you do not lose what we have worked for, but that you may be rewarded fully. 2 John 8

Nobody likes to lose. Every person wants to win at whatever they are trying to achieve. Losing usually means failure in some way or another.

Yet, many people are losing all the time. They are losing what they and others have worked for. Some will work very hard to accomplish some type of task, and then about midway through they give up and lose everything they had accomplished so far.

Marriages are started and can last several to many years, then suddenly fall apart into a divorce because of failure to watch out for problems that arise. Reputations are lost on a regular basis, because people don’t watch out for what they are doing and let it go.

Many believers have fallen away from God and the church, because they are not watching out what they are doing and where they are at. They have lost the gift of eternal life that Christ has given them, because they have not kept their eyes on God, and began to follow the world.

Those who are believers in Jesus are the results of the work of others being a witness and the work of Jesus in their lives. This salvation can be given up and lost, when a person chooses to turn away from God and follow the world. They chose to follow the teachings of this world, rather than the teachings of Jesus.

John tells the people to watch out. They are to keep a close eye on their walk with God. They need to keep a close eye on how they are living in this world. Each believer must continue, on a daily basis, to choose to live for Christ and to act upon the teachings of God, rather than the teachings of this world.

Every day you must open your eyes and keep a watch out on how you are living for God. Take a look at your life and see if the way you are acting, speaking and thinking is following the teachings of Jesus, or the teachings of this world.

Keep you life focused on Christ and God’s word and you will not lose in the end, you will be rewarded with eternal life in heaven with God. Watch out so that you do not lose this great reward.

I pray today that you will know the reward God has for you; that you will watch out for deceptions that will come your way; that you will live your life by God’s way; and that you will not lose the reward God is giving you.

Matthew 21:13 A Robbery In God’s House

Matthew 21_13

“It is written,” he said to them, ” ‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.’ ” Matthew 21:13

Jesus had walked into the temple courts and saw many people exchanging money and selling things. He knocked everything over and then reminded them what Isaiah and Jeremiah had prophesied about the temple. Isaiah called the temple a house of prayers. Jeremiah said they made it a den of robbers.

No one likes to be robbed of anything. It is commonly thought throughout the world that stealing is wrong. It is also common that of anyplace to steal, no one should steal from a church or temple. Anyone who has something stolen from them usually seeks out justice to find and punish the person who did the stealing.

Although Jesus was dealing with money and selling in the church, there is a different type of stealing that is common in the church. It is the stealing of time from God, the pastor and others inside the church.

One may ask how there is stealing of time inside the church?

Every week people go to church, many on a regular basis. Yet, while they are in church, sitting in the chairs, their mind is somewhere else. They are not focused on the worship of God or the sermon being spoken. The songs being sung are done with rote memorization, they are just words being said with no meaning in the heart. The words being spoken for the sermon go in one ear and out the other. There is no application to the life of the person.

This is stealing from God, the pastor and others. God has placed the pastor and the worship team there to lead people to get closer to God. If one does not move in closer to Him, it is wasting their time and stealing it from them. It is stealing from God what He has given for good.

As you go to your next church service, ask yourself if you are stealing from God. Where is your heart while you are sitting in the service? Are you worshipping God from your heart, or just with words?

Use the time God is giving you to draw closer to Him in worship and praise. Apply His words to your life to be more like Jesus. Don’t rob God anymore of this blessing.

I pray today that you will focus on God more; that you will worship God from your heart; that you will use the time wisely that God has given you; and that you will not rob God of anything.