Good day to each of you reading this column on the commandments.
Thank you for taking the time to read the column as I do hope you will be enlightened as I break down the commandment.
Folks, this is a commandment—God is not asking us to abide, follow or observe—
He is commanding us to follow each of his commandments or laws. This is not done out of meanness, hate, or making us fill simple but of love. Remember, Jesus says if you love me, then you will keep my commandments (John 14:15). Each of these commandments were made for our benefit and we must follow them, each one of them to what is written. Each of these commandments are perfect and man is not to tamper nor bend his or her interpretation to what God had said.
Look around you and look at the mess our world is in and why? Simple, we have not followed God’s laws because we think we are smarter than our maker, God.
Would it not be easier to follow God’s laws and receive the blessings from him than the curses? If you don’t believe, then I challenge you to read Deuteronomy 28, every verse and you will see what is happening in this world as well as countries when we disobey God.
As a parent, should you not discipline your child when he or she does something that is wrong? The book of Proverbs speaks about discipling your child when they do something wrong, so this is the same analogy used when we sin in God’s eyes and we must repent and accept the consequences. Sin is the breaking of God’s laws as God loves us and when we sin there must be repentance of not doing that sin again and consequences for the sin made.
Let’s look at the second commandment: Exodus 20:4-6 (KJV) Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt now bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: For I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
When reading the Old Testament, we read about many graven images used by the false religions for sexual gratification and killing innocent people. Each of these graven images have fallen by the wayside such as Baal worship and the goddess of fertility.
As you read the first three verses above, do you understand why God gave man dominion over the fish of the sea, fowl of the air and every creeping that creeps on the earth? We are not to bow down, serve or place angels, snakes, lions, tigers, crows, cows, pigs or any form of animal to God. We are to have dominion or authority of the above as it says in Genesis for our God is a jealous God.
When fast forwarding to today, we may not bow down before an image but to worship before an image is to distinguish its power and authority and accept its over lordship. How does that happen? We set up idolatry when we put service of other gods above God and that service takes first place above all else. A couple of examples are the love of money and wealth—working night and day, seven days a week, never taking for anyone else, obtaining as much money as you can and hurting as many people as you can to obtain the wealth, making money your God.
Turn with me to Daniel 3: 1-30 (KJV)- Have you heard the phrase dare to be a Daniel? When you read this chapter, you will completely understand how that phrase came about. Daniel had interpreted the dream of King Nebuchadnezzar in chapter 2 and in the last few verses of chapter2 Daniel was promoted to ruler over Babylon and chief of the governors. Daniel, placed Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego over Babylon’s affairs. As you read the first verse, the stage is set as King Nebuchadnezzar makes a giant gold image of himself (ego) so everyone will bow down and worship him as king. In verses 2,3, he gathers princes, governors, captains, judges, treasurers, counselors, sheriffs and rulers of the provinces for the dedication of the gold image of the King. King Nebuchadnezzar commanded that in verse 4,5 that all people, nations, languages upon the sound of the instruments will fall down and worship the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king hath set up. Look at verse 6—And whoso falleth not down and worshippeth shall the same hour be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace. Verse 7 goes on to say when the instruments sounded then all the people fell down and worshipped. God did not man to fall down and worship, but Nebuchadnezzar did, and the people did what the King told them to do. Thank you, God, for having Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego disobey the King, prayed to God for intervening, and having faith that God would take full care no matter the circumstances. Here is the testament to faith in God and dare to be a Daniel.
Since the time of Nebuchadnezzar, man has worshipped gold or its equivalent in the love of money. Man starts wars over money, men and women leave marriages over lack of or for more money, along with destitution and want to have been the gifts to men from this god. Review the life of J.Paul Getty with a few quotes.
Getty was quoted as saying “A lasting relationship with a woman is only possible if you are a business failure”, and “I hate to be a failure. I hate and regret the failure of my marriages. I would gladly give all my millions for just one lasting marital success.”[32
Getty remained an inveterate hard worker, boasting at age 74 that he often worked 16 to 18 hours per day overseeing his operations across the world.[9
On July 10, 1973, in Rome, ‘Ndrangheta kidnappers abducted Getty’s 16-year-old grandson, John Paul Getty III, and demanded by telephone a $17 million payment (approximately $95.9 million in 2018) for the young man’s safe return. However, “the family suspected a ploy by the rebellious teenager to extract money from his miserly grandfather.” John Paul Getty Jr. asked his father for the money, but was refused.
After his release Paul III called his grandfather to thank him for paying the ransom but, it is claimed, Getty refused to come to the phone. Nine people associated with ‘Ndrangheta were later arrested for the kidnapping, but only two were convicted. Paul III was permanently affected by the trauma and became a drug addict. After a stroke brought on by a cocktail of drugs and alcohol in 1981, Paul III was rendered speechless, nearly blind and partially paralyzed for the rest of his life. He died 30 years later on February 5, 2011, at the age of 54.
Getty defended his initial refusal to pay the ransom on two points. First, he argued that to submit to the kidnappers’ demands would immediately place his other fourteen grandchildren at the risk of copy-cat kidnappers. He added:
The second reason for my refusal was much broader-based. I contend that acceding to the demands of criminals and terrorists merely guarantees the continuing increase and spread of lawlessness, violence and such outrages as terror-bombings, “skyjackings” and the slaughter of hostages that plague our present-day world. (Getty, 1976, p. 139).
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Is the love of gold, liquid gold, money worth this so-called security of life, blessings of peace and happiness between individuals?
I like what Howard Rand says in his book, the Digest of Divine Law, for men continue to worship this image, or any other object of adoration, placing service to and desire for this image of their idolatry ahead of God can bring nothing else than the wrath of God upon such individual and nation.
Such a profound statement for the times we live in, especially when we allow the “love of” to become our god. Please take time to read God’s word each day and be ready and prepared to be a Daniel for the time will come and we will all be tested for our faith.
May God Bless each of you as we look to the Third Commandment.