their god…

Day 280

Prayer for the day

You are the LORD; do not withhold your compassion from me; let your love and your faithfulness keep me safe for ever.

Scripture for the day

Isaiah 28-29, Philippians 3

Isn’t it amazing what we’ll chase after sometimes? Even with all of the accumulated human wisdom, knowledge, and experience, we so regularly decide that we know best, or that we want to see if we can’t change that experience. We chase after things that have been proven to give us nothing but grief, yet we think that perhaps we will be the exception to the rule, the one to whom the laws don’t apply.

In the First Testament, Isaiah calls the people to account and threatens them with the wrath of God. They have become drunkards, befuddled with wine and beer. he chastises the people for chasing after things that will harm them, that will not satisfy them, and ultimately that will keep them from following God in the way they ought.

Paul has a similar concern when he talks to the Christians in Philippi. His concern is not necessarily the Philippian Christians, but those he dubs “enemies of the cross of Christ.” These people, says Paul, are short-sighted, unable to see beyond their base desires and wants. They look too shallowly, making their stomach their god, rather than the living creator God. Their desire is for base things, things without benefit, and they seek these things instead of seeking after the things of God.

These people are a temptation for the people of God because pleasure is an enticing thing, exciting in us desires for things that do not satisfy. They above all, according to Paul, are to be avoided, as they can entice us to be far less than what we are meant to be.

It is a subtle snare, and easy trip, yet we would be wise to heed the words of scripture. Do not chase after beer, after wine, after the god of the stomach. Seek instead the marvellous things of the God who truly will satisfy.

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