Read Exodus 32:1-14; 34:1, 4-9.
Why do human beings seem prone to worship images or idols? The people of Israel had seen Yahweh God move in powerful ways during the exodus from Egypt. They had seen the plagues, the visible manifestation of God’s presence in the cloud and the fire, and the parting of the Red Sea. But, Moses had been on the mountain receiving God’s instructions for worship a long time. The people demanded an idol to worship instead of God. Aaron obliged them and produced a golden calf. The Israelites wanted to return to the polytheism that they had seen in Egypt in violation of God’s commands. This was a problem from which the Israelites would deal with for the rest of the nation’s existence.
What about us? Do we put up idols in our lives which substitute for the one true God? Yes, it is difficult for us to wrap our finite minds around the idea of an omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent God. However, we have seen God move in nature, in redemptive history, and in our own lives. Worshipping the one true God in spirit and in truth helps insulate us from the sinful temptations of our hearts and the sinful practices of the culture in which we live. As we worship God it reminds us of who we are and moves us to be grateful for God’s provision of salvation through Jesus Christ in the midst of our sin. As you enter into worship this week, think about who God is and the mercy and grace that He has shown you. God is greater than any idol that you might construct. Tear those things down and worship the one true God!