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That same night the LORD said to him, "Take the second bull from your
father's herd, the one seven years old. Tear down your father's altar
to Baal and cut down the Asherah pole beside it. 26
Then build a proper kind of altar to the LORD your God on the top of
this height. Using the wood of the Asherah pole that you cut down, offer
the second bull as a burnt offering."
wondered, "If God is with Israel, then why has he let us be
overpowered by the Midianites." The reason was Israel's unfaithfulness
to God. Instead of worshiping God alone, they had worshiped the gods
of the Amorites.
The first step toward deliverance for
Israel was to destroy the pagan Baal altar and Ashtoreth pole that had
been set up in his town. The road to restoration and deliverance
begins with tearing down what is false and instead offering up worship
and devotion to the One True God.
Response and Action:
I face difficult situations in life, I find myself asking a question
similar to Gideon's-- "If God is with me, why is this happening?"
Before questioning God's faithfulness, I should examine my own
faithfulness to God. I need to recognize the ways my family, my church,
my town, my state, my country have failed to acknowledge God.
reflection is needed if I am to recognize the idols we have erected
and the ways we have let them distort and diminish our devotion for
God. There is no God but the One True God. Any rivals for
wholehearted commitment to and reverence for God must be torn down.
God, free me from everything that oppresses and diminishes. Help me
to turn away from what is wrong and to do what is right. Lead me away
from temptation and deliver me from evil. Provide for my needs today.
Protect me from discouragement, and encourage me, by your Spirit,
through your Word, your people, your promises, and all that is beautiful
and true. Give me the honesty to recognize the false ideas and idols
in my heart, and give me the courage to tear them down and cast them
aside in order that I might worship and follow you with my whole heart,
soul, mind, and strength. Through Christ, I pray. Amen.
Spiritual Formation Verses:
all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life. Put away
perversity from your mouth; keep corrupt talk far from your lips."
Counterfeit Gods: The Empty Promises of Money, Sex, and Power, and the Only Hope that Matters
by Timothy Keller