God’s Response to Idolatry

In Exodus 32

Over the last several weeks, we have explored the passages leading up to Exodus 32 to understand why the Israelites disobeyed the LORD and turned to idolatry.

Ultimately, their decision was not just one of impatience, but in the words of Paul many years later,

They exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever![1]

Keeping in mind that scripture says we were created in the LORD’s image (Genesis 1:26), have you ever considered how humanity’s tendency to worship things or people other than Him affects the LORD?

Also, why would the LORD create us to have this tendency?

What purpose does this serve?

Continue reading “God’s Response to Idolatry”

Why Did They Turn to Idolatry? | Part Three

Again, thank you for all the prayers while I recovered from my exceptionally long work week and head cold.

Although I am still feeling some physical tiredness along with some lingering symptoms from the head cold, I am much stronger today than I was a week ago.

It is fascinating how the fact that I had to pause between each part of this “Why Did They Turn to Idolatry” series aligns with the series.

One reason I feel this way is that it has reinforced the concept of patience we first looked at in part one.

Another reason I feel this way is that it allowed me to share how the LORD encouraged me during an exhausting week through both His Word and songs written by fellow believers about Him.

Each of these examples was exceptionally timely for my need, just as the LORD provided for the Israelites exactly what they needed in part two of this series.

But now we need to answer the question, “Why did they turn to idolatry?”

Continue reading “Why Did They Turn to Idolatry? | Part Three”

Needing A Recovery Weekend

As many of you know, last week was unusually full for me at work.

We hosted our denominational national gathering which required several back-to-back fourteen to fifteen-hour days.

The week went remarkably well considering hosting an event of this magnitude is not what we regularly do.

Thank you for your prayers as I participated in all of this.

In addition to the busy week, I have developed a head cold that is draining me even more.

Thus, the next installment of Why Did They Turn to Idolatry? | Part Three will wait another week.

In the meantime, I want to share how the Lord encouraged me throughout this past week.

Continue reading “Needing A Recovery Weekend”

Why Did They Turn to Idolatry? | Part Two

purpose

Yes, we are getting to part two this week.

Before we do, thank you for your prayers over the last week.

Last Tuesday, a coworker asked about my stress level regarding the upcoming conference we are hosting at my work.

I responded, “Frankly, I couldn’t care less right now.”

Granted, that response stemmed from what I shared with you last Sunday.

But by Wednesday, I realized my attitude had shifted in a positive direction. The new attitude is that this conference is just another work week.

  • Yes, there will be 1500 people on our campus over the next week that typically aren’t there.
  • Yes, I am tasked with things to do that are not a part of my normal work responsibilities that will involve extremely long hours each day.
  • And yes, I still have moments of sadness over the pet losses and some other expected losses that are looming on the horizon.

But, in the end, my purpose for next week does not differ from any other day.

What is that purpose and is it possible to relate it to today’s study?

Continue reading “Why Did They Turn to Idolatry? | Part Two”

Why Did They Turn to Idolatry? | Part One

Patience

One of my responsibilities at my day job is to train employees in our software tools.

As I was doing this last Friday, we had to wait for what I sarcastically refer to as the “spinning circle of death” to load the page we needed.

At one point, I stopped the trainee I was working with from clicking the link again by pointing out the circle was still spinning and stating we needed to be patient for the computer to finish processing.

They immediately looked at me with a big grin and said, “Patience is not one of my virtues.”

I laughingly replied, “So this is why we have so many technical issues during your training. Clearly, God is helping you grow in this virtue.”

Why am I sharing this jesting about the need for patience?

And what does it have to do with this post’s title, “Why Did They Turn to Idolatry?”

Continue reading “Why Did They Turn to Idolatry? | Part One”

Remembering to Give Thanks | Exodus 32:1-8

thanks

Why is it important to remember to give thanks?

Looking up the word thanks led me to the word gratitude.

In turn, looking up the word gratitude led me to the word grateful.

The definition of grateful then led me back to the words gratitude and thanks.

Oh, the fun of the English language.

Seriously, why is it important to remember to give thanks, express gratitude, and be grateful?

And what does this have to do with Exodus 32:1-8?

Continue reading “Remembering to Give Thanks | Exodus 32:1-8”

Fueling the Worship Response

fuel

What is your first thought when you think about fuel?

Gasoline or electricity is a typical fuel that enables vehicles to get us from point to point.

Wood is an excellent fuel for a campfire.

Physically, we use food as fuel to nourish and sustain our bodies.

But there are other fuels to consider.

For example, Exodus 12:27 ends with the phrase, “And the people bowed their heads and worshiped.”

What fueled this worship response?

Continue reading “Fueling the Worship Response”

Responding to the God Who Calls–Genesis 31:17-18

Camels
  • Jacob lied to his father and stole from his brother.
  • Jacob loved Rachel more than Leah.
  • Jacob cheated Laban, his father-in-law.

Yet, when God called (Genesis 31:3), Jacob responded.

Our passage for study today: Genesis 31:17-18

17 So Jacob arose and set his sons and his wives on camels. 18 He drove away all his livestock, all his property that he had gained, the livestock in his possession that he had acquired in Paddan-aram, to go to the land of Canaan to his father Isaac. [1]

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Do You Enjoy God? (Part Two)

river and tree of life

Growing up, I recall the backyard of my parent’s home had several large oak trees and a maple tree. Also lining the edge of their property line and the start of the neighbor’s yard behind was a row of cottonwood trees.

I remember climbing both the maple tree and one of the cottonwood trees frequently.

Sometimes I climbed the trees to see how high I could get or as a hiding spot when playing hide and seek with neighboring kids.

I also recall times when I would go to the trees when I was hurting emotionally. Being hidden amongst the leaves and supported by the sturdy tree branches helped me feel safe in those moments.

Why all this talk about trees?

Today, we will study Psalm 1:3-4, which uses fruit tree imagery when describing a blessed or happy follower of God.

Continue reading “Do You Enjoy God? (Part Two)”