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  • Writer's pictureOlufunmilayo Adekusibe

THEY EXCHANGED THEIR GLORY FOR A GOLDEN CALF


 

Today’s Readings:

Psalm 106:1-6, 19-23

Exodus 24:12-18

Mark 2:18-22

 


The psalm before us today rehearsed God’s goodness and faithfulness in the history of the Israelites, inspite of their sinfulness (Neh. 9:1-38; Ps 78; Isa 63:7 – 64:12). It tells of man’s sad inclination to sin, as it reflect Israel’s religious failures and God’s patience and goodness despite their behaviour. The occasion was said to be the repentance of post-Exilic Jews who returned to Jerusalem (vv. 46-47). The psalmist is always very grateful to the mercies and faithfulness of God. This is seen in the psalms that calls for the praise of God like today’s because His mercy endures for ever. Yet he claims that no one can fully appreciate the mighty acts of God or praise Him. Those who genuinely love God maintain justice and constantly do what is right (v. 3). They are blessed and happy with the blessings described in Psalm 1. The psalmist desires to share in the good gifts that God bestows on his people so that he can praise God with them (vv. 4-5). But he also admits that they have sinned like their fathers who acted wickedly in response to God’s goodness (vv. 4-6).


At God’s invitation, Moses has gone to Mount Horeb to receive the Ten Commandments, but before his return, the people had convinced Aaron to make a golden calf idol to be worshipped (v.19; Ex. 32:1-14, Deut. 9:7-21). At that moment they forgot the awesome deliverance acts of God (vv. 21-22) and so, they exchanged the glory of God for an animal that eats grass. Why should Israel do a thing like this, after witnessing God’s wonder in Egypt, in the wilderness, and at the Red Sea. They find it difficult to believe the God they cannot see. Again, they do not know what has happened to Moses who led them up to that place.


If care is not taken, we can easily fall into such syncretism, and before we know it, we end up combining the worship of God with worship of fallen angels and idols? In the vicissitudes of life, persecution, oppression by the enemy, grieve or pain, when we are recklessly seeking for solutions to problem where the help of man is short lived and vain (Jer. 10:10-12), we can fall into error. At moments like this, we forget the goodness of God, His help, provision, deliverance and protection in the past years. But inspite of our forgetfulness and self-willed rebellion, God patiently delivers us, when we turn to Him for help. This action got God very angry with the Israelites whom he loved, chose for His own, and cared for to the extent that God decided to destroy them but for Moses a leader full of compassion, who interceded for the people before God (v. 23; Exod. 32:30-34).


At this crucial period of pandemonium, confusion, oppression, decay and persecution in the world, and in our nation, God is looking for who will stand in the gap for His people so that they would not go further away from Him into destruction. God is looking for anyone who has the boldness and a courageous mind of Christ to keep watch at the gate of families, environments, cities, nations, even at the gate of His Church in order to alleviate evil and wickedness in the lives of his children. But before we can stand in the gap or keep watch at spiritual gates –

  1. We must have surrendered our lives to the lordship of Christ (Jn. 3:5);

  2. Must live a righteous life of integrity;

  3. Must be a friend of Christ full of the Holy Spirit;

  4. Must be have a forgiving spirit with a large heart;

  5. Must have a strong and large faith that would not compromise in the face of challenges and opposition;

  6. Must continuously read, study and meditate upon the word of God as this is vital to the power of God.

  7. Must be prayerful and be able to keep watch morning, day, and night, interceding;

  8. Must be overflowing with the love of Christ.

OLUFUNMILAYO TITILOLA ADEKUSIBE


 

Prayer:

  1. Praise ye the Lord. O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good for his mercy endureth for ever.

  2. Who can utter the mighty acts of the Lord? Who can shew forth all his praise?

  3. Have mercy on me O God, according to Your loving kindness, according to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions, in Jesus’ name.

  4. Wash me thoroughly with the blood of Jesus from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin, in Jesus’ name.

  5. Father, thank you for Your love, concern and care for us, in Jesus’ name.

  6. Create in me a pure heart, O Lord; renew a right, teachable, and humble spirit within me, in Jesus’ name.

  7. Father, raise intercessor for Your erring people; and bring them back into Your fold, in Jesus’ name.

  8. O Lord, visit Christian homes with your love, mercy and creative power; deliver, heal, and repair broken marriages in accordance with Your ordinances, in Jesus’ name.

  9. We hand over our children, youths, adolescents and young adults to Your fatherly care, Lord, teach them by yourself, deliver them from the deceit of the destroyer, in Jesus’ name.

  10. May Your kingdom come Lord, may your will be done; break with Your iron rod the tyrannies of sin in our nation, in Jesus’ name.

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