Read His Words Before Ours!
1 Kings 18:20-46
Since the beginning of time, created beings have had an affinity for worship, we were in fact, handcrafted for worship! Alas, we set our worship on what we can visually feast our eyes on, or we worship the longings of our hearts. In all transparency, we worship ourselves.
Before you push back from the table and roll your eyes, can you see it?
Laundry folded my way.
The routine planned in benefit of me.
The fight with my spouse because I wasn’t being heard.
The dishwasher re-arranged to satisfy my preference.
Frustrated at church because they didn’t play the music I like best.
My meal plan.
My fitness agenda.
Hold on and take a breath in, then say this with me, “I worship myself.”
Oh, that stings doesn’t it?!
My eyes are burning with tears having just said that out loud with you. Let its truth sink into the far-reaching corners of your heart, the areas we toss decorative throw pillows so no one sees what’s actually under there, least of all ourselves.
So, why would God’s first, most critically important commandment, and the second, jump off the page because it calls our attention to solely focus on Him as being God and the only One worthy of worship?
Because He loves us.
Yes, do it with me again, take a breath in and linger over each syllable as you whisper out loud, “Because He Loves Us.”
Oh, that fills my heart and chills my skin.
What radical love exists that desires to loosen our death-like grip on ourselves, lift our chin to One Worthy, and allow us to bask in pure, brilliant love cascading over us?!
You shall have no other gods before Me.
I alone am He who brought you out slavery. (Exodus 20:2)
I alone have chosen you for My own possession and beautiful inheritance. (Deuteronomy 7:6)
I alone have cleared the ground before you, giving freedom. (Psalm 18:19)
You shall make no carved image and shall not bow down and worship it.
I am a jealous God, longing to pour out My steadfast love on you. (Exodus 20:5-6)
I alone am forgiver and redeemer. Only I can do what no created thing can. (Isaiah 44:17-22)
I alone am worthy. (Revelation 5:1-10)
One man stood atop a high hill, flanked on all sides by men who worshipped wooden idols their hands had created. They mocked him for worshipping Yahweh.
The man called aloud an impossible challenge, “You call on the name of your god, and I will call on the Name of my God. The God who answers with fire, He Is God.” He built an altar, dug a ditch around it, and flooded the entire area with so much water, it flooded the ditch.
All the while, the men mocked. They pleaded for hours and hours for their god to send fire. They cut themselves. They danced provocatively. They slaughtered an animal. Silence.
Dusk crept around the crowd, tensions ran high, and Elijah beckoned to each bloody man, “Come near me.” With an audience of enemies tightening around him, he lifted his head and said, “Answer me, Yahweh! Answer me so this people will know You, Yahweh, are God and that You have turned their hearts back.” (1 Kings 18:37)
Yahweh’s fire fell and consumed the meat, the stones, and even the water.
Only One Worthy
A death sentence pressing against him because he refused to worship a man, Daniel fought against the grip of pride, and fell to his knees before an open window, choosing to publicly worship the Only One Worthy. The Lord God shut the mouths of the lions and spared Daniel’s life. (Daniel 6:10-21)
Dusty feet walking around a mega-city, eyes falling on a sign over an altar reading, “To The Unknown God.” With burning clarity, Paul turned to the citizens following him and said, “This God you worshipped in ignorance, I now proclaim to you.” (Acts 17:23) He, the Creator of all things, does not live in a shrine made by human hands. He who breathes into your lungs and fashioned your DNA is drawing you to Himself that you might worship Him, and Him alone. For He is the Only One Worthy of your worship. (Acts 17:24-29)
A vast multitude, innumerable by any standard, representing every nation, tribe, people, and tongue, stood as one body. Robed in white. Palm branches in their hands. They cried aloud with one, thunderous voice, “Salvation belongs to our God, who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”. (Revelation 7:9-10)
One who had power to pay our death penalty for sin by dying in our place.
One who offers to slay our pride so we can enjoy eternal life with Him.
One who commands our true worship because He loves us.
Who will you worship?
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Thanks for joining us today as we journeyed into Ten Week One! Don’t miss out on the discussion below – we’d love to hear your thoughts!
Beautiful words that lead us straight to the One True God. Thank you.
Loved this! Such a great reminder to focus on the One and not myself.