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. 

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Judges 6:10 Results Of Not Listening

Half Dome

“I said to you, ‘I am the LORD your God; do not worship the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you live.’ But you have not listened to me.” Judges 6:10 

There are times that people go through tough situations in their lives. Sometimes these tough situations are because God is allowing the enemy to test them, to determine where their heart really is. Other times the tough situation is a result of bad choices made, refusing to listen to God’s Holy Spirit guiding and directing them.

The nation of Israel had times that they would be overrun by the enemy. They would cry out to God for some help. At one point God had sent a prophet to them to tell them that He had given them a command not to worship the false gods, yet they chose to worship the false gods. They had chosen to not listen to God and the result of an enemy take over had occurred.

God does not want the enemy to take over His people, in reality He wants the enemy defeated. However, when His people are not listening to Him and doing what He says, He allows the enemy to take over.

The purpose of the enemy taking over is to get the attention of His people back on Him.

God is not out to destroy people, but to build them up and give them life. Yet, if they choose not to listen to Him and follow Him, He will do what it takes to get their attention.

As people go through tough times, most people will call out to God for help. This is one of God’s ways to get their attention and focus back on Him. Every believer needs to stay focused on God and listen to Him as they follow Him.

God is not against you, but is for you. He does not want to destroy you, but He needs to you listen to Him and obey Him. He loves you enough that He will do whatever it takes to keep you focused on Him. This may mean going through some tough times.

If you are going through a tough time, turn your entire focus onto God and not the tough time. Allow God to guide you through the situation.

Even when following God, times may be tough, but He will always give you strength to make it through. Don’t turn away from God, but listen to Him.

I pray today that you will know God’s directions; that you will listen to God; that you will obey God; that you will keep your focus on God; and that you will see God’s work in your life. 

 

Joshua 6:5 Put God In The Front With Worship

Castle

So Joshua son of Nun called the priests and said to them, “Take up the ark of the covenant of the LORD and have seven priests carry trumpets in front of it.” Joshua 6:5

Every person has times of battles in his life. There are some that are small battles and others that are major battles. Some will face those battles head on, while many will attempt to run from the battles in fear.

Joshua and all the Israelites had just crossed over the Jordan into the new land of Canaan. They had come upon the city of Jericho, which was to be their first major take over in the new land. It was a large city that was very well fortified.

At the time, the Israelites did not have any large battering rams or bombs to take out the large walls of the city. All they had was a few small weapons and God’s word. God had told Joshua that he would take that city.

To get ready to take the city, Joshua had the priests, holding the ark of the covenant, go in front with some men blowing trumpets. The priests with the ark of the covenant and the trumpeters would lead all the Israelites in a march around the city for seven days.

The ark of the covenant represented God’s presence among the people. They would allow God to go first. Then along side of His presence were the trumpeters blowing the trumpets in worship of God. With God and worship, the Israelites met their enemy and God removed that large wall from before them. The obstacle of the take over was removed.

As a believer, there will be times in your life that you will meet up with large walls that stand in your way or you will meet up with a large enemy that must be removed. God can and will be with you, if you allow Him to be in front. Allow God to lead the way into the battle. Don’t do the battle on your own.

As you move forward in the battle, be willing to blow the trumpet of worship to God. Allow God to fight your battle for you. God is strong enough to take down walls that are before you. Trust that He knows how to do it. Give Him all the worship as you move forward into battle.

I pray today that you will have God’s presence with you at all times; that you will allow God to fight your battles; that you will give God worship as you march forward; and that God will show Himself faithful and strong to you. 

Deuteronomy 29:18 Stay With God

Mushrooms

Make sure there is no man or woman, clan or tribe among you today whose heart turns away from the LORD our God to go and worship the gods of those nations; make sure there is no root among you that produces such bitter poison. Deuteronomy 29:18

In this world there are many different gods to worship and follow. There are many different religions that people all around the world are willing to follow. Some are following direct gods, while others are just beliefs of this world and not following anything but self.

Over the years there have been many people who have turned away from God and turned to one or more of these gods that others follow. Their hearts have strayed away from God. This is not something that just happened one day, it was a process over some time.

Moses had given the people a charge to make sure no one turned their hearts away from God to a false god of the nations. They were not to allow any root to begin to grow that would allow this poison in their lives.

Roots begin to grow in the heart of a person who is not staying in God’s word or is meeting together with other believers on a regular basis. There is no one to help keep the person accountable. They begin to see other beliefs and begin to believe them, rather than God’s word. As that root grows in their hearts, they begin to turn away from God.

Every believer is to keep an eye on his fellow believer, helping keep each other focused on God. This will keep roots of discontent and false belief to rise up in the heart. Daily love and fellowship with believers and God, will keep one from turning away from God to false gods.

You may be a believer who is becoming discontent and are starting to believe in other false gods. Turn your eyes back onto God. Remember what had brought you to God in the first place and stay with God.

As you follow God, help your fellow believers to stay with God. Do not allow any roots of discontent or false belief to rise up. Worship God together and keep Him at the forefront of your lives.

Do not allow yourself or anyone else to walk away from God. Keep the roots of poison out of your lives as you walk with God.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your Savior; that God will keep you from being poisoned by false beliefs; that you will strive to keep others focused on God; and that God will open your eyes to roots leading you or others astray from Him.

Leviticus 26:1 Who Is Your God?

Man on a cliff

Do not make idols or set up an image or a sacred stone for yourselves, and do not place a carved stone in your land to bow down before it. I am the LORD your God. Leviticus 26:1

While there are large numbers of people around the world that believe in physical idols, there are also many people who do not believe in them. There still some very advanced nations in this world that believe in idols and will set offerings before them and pray to them, believing that the idols can do something for them.

As a whole, the majority of people in the European nations and America’s do not believe in idol worship, yet, the majority worship idols on a daily basis. Instead of worshipping a statue, many will worship a thing. Instead of bowing down and praying to the idol and calling it a god, they worship an idol in different ways.

More commonly people worship things by spending their time, money, and effort with it, to the expense of everyone and everything else. The list is infinite in what the item can be. Some common ones are: jobs, cars, homes, hobbies, careers, celebrities, and money.

It is seen many times where a person focuses so much on his career and advancement in that field, that he neglects his family, friends, church and God. Making the position or pleasing the boss is all that matters to him, at any cost.

Others may be focused on a hobby–watching or playing sports. They do it to the point of neglect of everything else. It is all that matters to them. It consumes them. The hobby has become their god.

Believers are no exception to worshipping idols. There are believers who are so consumed with ministry, that they neglect time with God, family and friends, things that are important. They can also get consumed with the position and do it out of greed and pride, rather than love and for God.

What a person worships, may also change with time, but it is still putting something before God–an idol.

Take a look at your life. Where do you spend your time, money, efforts, and focus?

What is most important to you in your life?

Think of your top three priorities in life. If the top three is not God, family, and being a witness, then you may have an idol in your life.

I pray today that you will know God as your only God; that you will serve God with all of your life; that God will help you remove all idols in your life; and that God will be your highest priority in this life.

Revelation 4:8 Non-Stop Praise

 

Praising Worship God

Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying: ” ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come.” Revelation 4:8

People often get excited about other people, events or things. When they do, it is something that they want to talk about constantly.

Those who love and follow a popular person are considered that person’s fan. There are fans of famous singers, actors, sports players or more, who are considered a fanatical fan. They talk about that person all the time, giving praise as to who that person is and how good that person is.

John is a given a little vision of inside heaven. There he sees some winged creatures who are praising God. They do not just praise God for a few minutes, or a few hours, but continually around the clock, day and night. They are talking about how holy He is.

Every week people go to church and sing a few worship songs about God, hear a short sermon about something God has to say, and then they are finished. When the service goes an extra ten minutes longer than normal, people get upset. They are ready to leave and go home. They are done worshipping God.

The winged creatures had a real vision of who God is. They knew how holy He is and so they continually proclaimed it, never tiring of talking about God.

Believers are to praise God with all of their life. There is to be a song of praise always on their lips.

God is holy. He is pure, perfect and holy. This means that everything He says and does is perfect. Perfect for each person. It cannot be said enough how holy He is. There can never be enough praise of God.

As you go through your days, continually sing praise to God. Let Him know how holy and wonderful He is. Let the whole world know how holy and wonderful God is.

God is so holy and wonderful, that one cannot say it enough or stop talking about Him. Get a vision of who God really is and you will not want to stop.

Join in with the creatures and never stop saying: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.”

I pray today that you will get a vision of how holy God is; that you will see how wonderful God is; that you will always give God praise; and that you will sing praise of God to others continually.

Acts 16:25 What To Do In Dark Times

Worship In The Dark

About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and other prisoners were listening to them. Acts 16:25

Paul and Silas had been preaching the gospel in a city they were approached by a girl who had been demon possessed. They cast the demon of the girl and the people of the city were angry with them. Paul and Silas were then put into prison. During the night they sat there praying and praising God, instead of complaining. As they were praying and worshipping God, God caused an earthquake to free them.

There are times in the life of every person that are dark. Things do not go the way they should have. A person is mistreated wrongly.

Most people will sit and complain about the situation and seek ways to get revenge. They will tell every one about the situation in a complaining way. The world says that what has happened is not right and the person has a right to strike back. The person will have no joy in the situation.

Instead of complaining, Paul and Silas had prayed to God and worshipped Him. They did not see the situation as dark, like the world sees it.

Believers have a reason to rejoice at all times, in all situations. God has given them forgiveness and life through Jesus Christ. God is with every believer and will always be with them, despite how dark it may appear to be. Jesus is light and brings that light into the life of a believer.

Where there is light, there is a reason to worship God. There is no depression or fear. His perfect love and light drives out the darkness and fear, giving one the ability to praise and worship Him in the darkest of nights.

You may be going through a dark time right now. It may appear as though the whole world is against you and you have lost the battle. You may feel as though you are in a prison with no chance for release.

Look up to God, pray and worship Him, despite how dark it is. It may be midnight, but God can bring light to your night. He can bring release to your chains and the bars that hold you in.

This will be a witness to the world of God’s love and power.

Are you worshipping or complaining?

I pray today that you will know God’s presence in your life; that you will seek God in dark times; that you will worship God and not complain; and that you will bring God’s light to this dark world.