How long, O Lord, must we put with ______. And, like the Psalmist, we cry out to God to end whatever we put in the blank. Did the prayers of the early Christians bring evil Herod to God’s attention? Didn’t God already know? God has had enough when humans declare another human is God. Don’t mess with God! How long, O Lord? Not long if you attempt to take God’s place. Let’s revisit the first four commandments…all about God:
Exodus 20, The Message
20 1-2 God spoke all these words:
I am God, your God,
who brought you out of the land of Egypt,
out of a life of slavery.
3 No other gods, only me.
4-6 No carved gods of any size, shape, or form of anything whatever, whether of things that fly or walk or swim. Don’t bow down to them and don’t serve them because I am God, your God, and I’m a most jealous God, punishing the children for any sins their parents pass on to them to the third, and yes, even to the fourth generation of those who hate me.
But I’m unswervingly loyal to the thousands who love me and keep my commandments.
The early church worship God, believed in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, His Son who put all things right with God, the Father once more. Herod did not believe. And here are God’s ACTions accordingly…
Acts 12, The Message
But things went from bad to worse for Herod. Now people from Tyre and Sidon put him on the warpath. But they got Blastus, King Herod’s right-hand man, to put in a good word for them and got a delegation together to iron things out. Because they were dependent on Judea for food supplies, they couldn’t afford to let this go on too long. On the day set for their meeting, Herod, robed in pomposity, took his place on the throne and regaled them with a lot of hot air. The people played their part to the hilt and shouted flatteries: “The voice of God! The voice of God!”
That was the last straw. God had had enough of Herod’s arrogance and sent an angel to strike him down. Herod had given God no credit for anything. Down he went. Rotten to the core, a maggoty old man if there ever was one, he died.
Meanwhile, the ministry of God’ Word grew by leaps and bounds.
What do we learn?
–God is God and we are not.
–We pray. God acts in ways that only He can.
–God is first. There should be NO other gods before our God.
–God is the only righteous God who will judge the living and the dead.
–God is in control of all His work “the ministry grew…”
–Is there anything that stands between God and myself? Am I putting any gods before the God of Creation and my heart?
Dear Heavenly Father, I pray much too often, “how long, O Lord” when maybe I should just put it all in your Court of judgement and honor. I repent of worry and other stuff of life that stands between You and I. I lay all that down, walk over it and worship only You this morning. Continue to teach me, get my attention and help me to walk, even run, freely with You. In Jesus Name, Amen