Saturday, January 31, 2015

Does God detest anything in your life?

Time Magazine cover - June 19, 1972.

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Deuteronomy 18:9-22

TO CHEW ON: "For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord, and because of these abominations the Lord your God drives them out before you." Deuteronomy 18:12

What a strong word—abomination—Moses uses here to warn the Israelites against compromise and syncretism.

[The word abomination is translated from the Hebrew word towebah. It is also rendered detestable and loathsome.]

What are the things that God names an abomination (detestable, loathsome)? Deuteronomy 18:9-11 names:
  • sacrificing children to idols.
  • practicing witchcraft.
  • acting as a soothsayer or one to interprets omens—a sorcerer.
  • conjuring up spells.
  • acting as a medium or spiritist.
  • calling up the dead.
It's a list of not altogether unfamiliar activities because our society, despite how "advanced" and technological it is, yearns for spiritual connection. If we have rejected God, we will look somewhere else for it. The scary thing is that sometimes these practices make their way into the lives of Christians and so enter the life of the church. Tim Challies in his book The Disciplines of Spiritual Discernment says:
"It should come as no surprise that even though we are called to live within the culture, the culture itself hates God and seeks to destroy those who love him. And yet this culture has influenced the church, perhaps more than the church has influenced the culture. There are at least four cultural influences that have led to a decline in discernment among Christians."

He goes on to name (and elaborate on) 1] a secular worldview; 2] a low view of scripture; 3] a low view of theology; and 4] a low view of God, as reasons for the church's slump into compromise.

Let's ask God by His Spirit to point out any abominable practices and involvements in our lives. And then let's denounce and forsake them. For:

Can two walk together unless they are agreed?" - Amos 3:3

Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” - John 8:12 NLT

Take no part in and have no fellowship with the fruitless deeds and enterprises of darkness, but instead [let your lives be so in contrast as to] expose and reprove and convict them." - Ephesians 5:11 AMP

PRAYER: Dear God, please give me a discerning heart to recognize the practices and involvements that are loathsome to You. Then help me to be quick to denounce and forsake them. Amen.

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Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Scripture quotations marked AMP are taken from the Amplified® Bible,
Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation
Used by permission." (www.Lockman.org)

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