“You shall have no other Gods before me.”
This is the first of 10 commandments given in this incredibly important chapter. Not that every chapter is not important but, this is extremely significant. It is the summation of God’s law given to his people in the Old Testament and it all starts with this simple, clear, concise, significant, primary in a sense command. “You shall have no other Gods before me.” Even think about, when Jesus answers a question, “What’s the greatest commandment?” What does he say? “To love the Lord your God with all you heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength, that’s the first and greatest commandment.” Here it is, “You shall have no other Gods before me. You shall not worship anything or anyone else.”
May God help us to not exchange His glory for lesser things. God alone is worthy of our ultimate devotion.
You shall give your heart completely over to God, not to your spouse, not to your children, not to your job, not to money or pleasure, or fame, nothing in this world holds in your heart the supreme position, other than God according to this command. He is supreme, you love him, Jesus goes on to say, “in a way that makes your closest relationships in this world,” Luke 14, “Look like hat in comparison.”If you love your father or mother, your wife or husband, your brother, sister more than God, then you are not a follower of Jesus. This is the commandment that drives us, a heart that is totally fixed on the worship of God and you think about it, sin flows from disobedience to this commandment, it’s really interesting.
When you look in Romans chapter 1 for example and you see that all kinds of sin and immorality, it flows from hearts that exchange the glory of God for lesser things. Even for good things. So Exodus chapter 20 verse 3 compels all of us to pray, God, fix our hearts more and more and more and more and more on you. Like totally on you. God help us to love you with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and even as we pray that, we thank and praise you for inviting us into a relationship with you marked by love. You the supreme God of the universe, the supremely satisfying, supremely fulfilling, supremely good, supremely loving, merciful, gracious, kind, just, there is no one like you. There is no one better than you.
Our spouses and kids don’t even come close to you. Nothing in this world comes close to you and your greatness, and you’ve invited us into relationship with you. Yes we say. Yes, help us to love you then with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. Then flowing from this, we trust that we will then love our spouses well, we’ll love our kids well. We will look at the things of this world well, we will live well when we are focused on loving you, on worshiping you with everything we have.
So capture all of our attention, all of our affection. Help us to focus it all on you. All day long, please oh God, please, turn our minds, turn our hearts towards you continually. Turn our hearts and minds away from lesser loves. To love you supremely and then as a result to love others in this world rightly. Just as Jesus said, “The second is like it and to love your neighbor as yourself.” Because that’s the kind of love that will flow from a love for you with all our heart and soul and mind and strength.
So help us God we pray, help us, by the power of your grace through Jesus, to have no other Gods before you and God, even as we pray that, we pray for the Bondo Poraja people in India who are worshiping all kinds of different gods right now, this Hindu people group down in the South Eastern corner of the country that is worshiping millions of gods, there’s no other gods like you, God deliver them from worship of false gods, from looking to false gods for satisfaction. Bring them to worship you, the one true God. Lord, you are God. You are the only God over India, bring men and women across India to trust in Jesus. God we pray, do it among the Bondo Poraja people and other people groups all throughout India.
So, oh God we pray this in our own hearts and we pray this for peoples around the world. Help us to have no other Gods before you, in Jesus name we pray, amen.
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