Wednesday, March 06, 2013

A Thought for Wednesday 3/6/13

“When the Lord your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, take heed to yourself that you are not ensnared to follow them after they are destroyed from before you, and that you do not inquire after their gods saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods?  I will do likewise.’  You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way, for every abomination to the Lord which He hates they have done to their gods, for they burn even their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods.”  Deuteronomy 12:29-32

Before Israel enters into the Promised Land, Moses has a stark warning for God’s people: “Do not try to be like everyone else.  Do not try to ‘fit in’.”  Human sacrifice, among other abominable practices, was the order of the day and was a central part of their worship; the Canaanite god Molech demanded blood and the people were so desperate for the “blessings” of this blood-thirsty god, they were even willing to sacrifice their own children for good crops and a better life!  And while there are many instances in the Bible that should not be read so literally, this is one area that is clear! 

You and I are called to something much greater, and this greater can only be attained if and when our lives are completely devoted to our God, our Holy Father, the God and Father of Messiah Jesus.  He has shown us a better way, but we must be willing to trust only Him if we ever hope to see and appreciate this better way.  Faithful disciples will never “fit in” this secular culture, and many will bear ill will against us because we refuse their ways.  “Tolerance” is only an acknowledgement that there are those who choose to follow false gods (a reality we cannot deny), but we cannot – must not – try to go along with them just to try and “get along” or learn to appreciate their culture.  Their culture is one of death!

We are called to stand firm in the faith, and in that call are promised the riches of the Kingdom of Heaven.  It is hard to stay focused on that righteous “Way” when there are so many attractive and compelling distractions, but we are given the means of grace which enable us to stay so focused: prayer, Scripture study, worship, fasting, and attending to the sacraments of the Church.  These are the good and abundant gifts that offer us a glimpse of the World which is to come, the World that is our true Home, and it is promised to the faithful who endure the Journey to the very end.


No comments: