- Religion and Philosophy»
- Christianity, the Bible & Jesus
Thou Shalt Have No Other gods Before Me
Exodus 20:3 - Thou shalt have no other gods before me
Let's look at this commandment closely, seriously and soberly. God is speaking through this verse to Israel, yet, He is speaking to the entire universe. Where does this passage lead? Is it important today? In this verse it is obvious that God is calling for us to focus, and this demands our undivided attention. Everything that doesn't represent God's Will is actually hocus pocus, and is designed to rob us of our focus.
By hocus pocus, I mean it is the trickery of sin and the nonsense of a sham used especially to cloak deception. Hocus pocus serves as a trigger terminology for me that when something is attacking and assaulting my ability to focus, I can discern what distractions and deceptions look like. The devil and demons were the first tricked by sin, and that is where hocus pocus began, and now they want followers. Sin robbed his focus from the Creator, and placed it on his own self, then he tricked man and woman in order to rob in like manner. Sin's training is how to take the heart, and mind off of the Creator, and use that attention for oneself or something else.
Let's look at the first time the term gods were introduced.
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
Notice that in verse five the serpent introduced the premise of the man and woman being as gods, as he was given audience to speak by the woman, he subtly inferred that they should exalt themselves as a god. This was the first trespass involving man and woman. It not only was a trespass against God but it was a trespass against them both. A trespass happens as a result of boundaries not being respected. Not only did the act to eat the fruit lead to defiance, but it also introduced trespassing. Boundaries were set by God and the line of demarcation was made clear, but the willingness to trespass became a choice that was made.
There was no information given how woman could be as a god, if the term covers a masculine perspective; because perversion was setting up a stage for confusion. To bring this point up to date, how about the confused state of men with men, and woman with woman in today's society? This is one of the many identity plagues from the garden. It took God given counsel and instructions through Moses via Scripture to help us to see what He required of us. We wonder why there is perversion in the world concerning identity and why there isn't true respect for God from those who do not know the truth. The serpent's sales pitch was an open insult against the identity of woman, but the attack was really towards and against Adam, woman was merely a stepping stone. This same trickery happened in the wilderness with Jesus, the enemy questioned His identity with the words such as, if You be the Son of God, do this and do that and prove yourself.
Adam hadn't yet experienced what it fully meant to be a man, nor Eve a woman before being deceived to be what they were not created to be. God created them in His image and after His likeness, and that would only be successful by obeying Him alone, and not putting anything before Him. This sounds like the devil in gear, he didn't like who the Creator created him to be and wanted to be equal to the Creator and not merely a created being known as an angel. He subtly played on man and woman's ignorance; he didn't tell them any truth, that it was he who wanted to be god, and with this act of treason he was bartering with, he could transfer everything God had given the garden dwellers and everyone who would come after to himself and his demonic hosts.
I will always believe that the title God or god pertains to the masculine and not feminine; so to be conversing with a woman and telling her that she can be as a god is deceitful and disrespectful. This is the delusion woman who are gay fell for, that they could function as a man with a woman's body. What man was given to operate as a man, woman was not given. As if they were told by the serpent, you will be as men. It is later added in mythology a feminine term goddess, but there is no biblical foundation for such. There is a mention of the Greek referring to Diana as a goddess of the heathen in the Book of Acts 19. This is a good example of what hocus pocus looks like and how one can loose their focus. Unlike the Lord Jesus Christ in his encounter in the wilderness where He dismisses all of the dialogue the deceiver dishes out with "It is Written" end of story; and what did the enemy do? he left with his bag of tricks. Why! Because Jesus' focus was on God the Father, and His Word and Will.
Eve's focus was taken off of God, her dialogue should have ended with "God hath said" end of story, that is really all she had to go on, there was no written word to refer to yet, but there was the spoken word of God to them both, yet she was having a lengthy discussion with the serpent, as he propositioned them to receive the knowledge of good and evil and become as gods. The need to be what God had authorized both of them to be, man and woman was threatened and soon replaced, and the need to be something other had surfaced. In Genesis 1:27, So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
It is because of this decision to be what God had not ordained them to be, this is when and how the identity crisis entered the world. If you read this account you have to see the hocus pocus and trickery that robbed Eve's focus from God. We are no better, because the Commandment has to counsel us not to put any thing or anyone before God. Who did the serpent tell the woman she could be as, a god. Even we can put ourselves before God, consciously and unconsciously. The conscious we can address by adhering to counsel with the principles laid out for us in the Word, the unconscious hides within and is unaddressed until the Holy Spirit shows us what lurks within. The Apostle Paul helps us with his findings as he admonishes us.
2 Corinthians 10:5
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
When you think of the commandments what thoughts emerge? Does it trigger you to think seriously? Or does it put you on edge, and make you uncomfortable? Or do you reason that the law is not for today, because we are under grace? In the Commandments God is laying out His pattern under a framework, and premises which are based on principles and rules that He wants us to adhere to. The Commandments are the framework for the patterns He has set in motion consisting of principles He wants the mind to adapt to and the flesh to follow His will which counteracts all that sin has set in motion. We need rules and regulations or the flesh can run amuck!
The law will never be a failure, but flesh will. It is our approach to what is laid out in the Commandments that is essential. You can't forsake what it ascribes for one moment; and you must see it as a system of counsels designed to help fallen life succeed through righteous judgments. The law is still judging us under grace, do you have the desire to steal or refrain from theft? Why restraint? because the law told you how God feels about you stealing and that He is not pleased with thieves. If you didn't know that the command was from God and you didn't value what is important to Him, you wouldn't care about your code of behavior and conduct. The Commandments first make you aware to care.
In other words, God is saying to each and everyone of us individually, as well as collectively, "I need you to focus on Me" because there are so many things that you can knowingly, and unknowingly, consciously, and unconscious put before Me, and in doing so, you are outside of my will. God's will is that we put nothing and no one before Him. In doing so we will only hurt ourselves. In this world we can only choose to focus solely on God. This world is noisy and chaotic under the auspices of sin, sometimes it seems everyone is speaking all at the same time, and saying different things all at once. Yet God is not the author of confusion and we need to hear and look to Him without being distracted.
God is telling us that there are those which are calling themselves gods which you must be aware of. I am the only true and living God, there is none that is before or above Me. Keep your eyes on Me. The Commandments are passages that lead us to counsel, and admonishment; they are composed of principles and precepts that He desires we follow or we will undoubtedly end up in idolatry, the second Commandment. Principles form principalities, either we will follow God, or there are principalities and powers we will be up against. Have you ever given the term principalities any thought? (Ephesians 6:12). Principalities in this verse signify evil, but, principles whether they are good or evill produce principalities. God's commandments are how we fight the principalities which evil dictates. God's commandments are principles which form principalities of excellence.
It is how we choose to think about a commandment that ensures our success. Commandments are laws, yet the term law intimidates us because with it we can expect judgment. Judgment is not our enemy, sin is. The commandments to put it simply are principles, we need principles to shape our value system, and add to our arsenal or weaponry good principalities that counteract evil. The commandment not to have any other gods provides instruction which is crucial to developing a set of values in which the Creator must be the center and above.
God must be our core value, only then we will be able to discern when something is invading the space only God can fill. We must value Him above all else. Principles are rules that shape our value system which are imbedded and poured out through Scriptures into our hearts and minds. Didn't God say that He would write His laws in our hearts and minds. There are laws, counsels, statues, precepts that we need, to compose our choices and decisions; and construct our actions, intents, motives, desires, and our words to comply with His instructions and commands. Without a set of good values, our appetites guide our choices. Appetites such as mammon and riches, or anything we put before God.
America is a good example, it proclaimed on stone (buildings), paper (money) in God We Trust. In its own words.....We have no other God. The Ten Commandments used to thrive in this Country, but now have been given a back seat by those who cannot understand and digest Scripture. Crime is being fought via a penal system, but the root cause is sin. A criminal is not a menace because of crime, he is a menace because he is a sinner, sinners commit sin. Take for instance, the commandment not to steal. Do you know how much crime would be reduced if this commandment was understood and practiced. Sounds pragmatic right? Not for a sinner that doesn't think about consequences. Ere for the grace of God that we too might not be in the place of hearing. You can't tackle crime and the prime root is sin. Sin must be dealt with through God's redemption song Jesus Christ.
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
The commandment instructed us to have no other gods before God. Did you notice that the title gods in Exodus 20:3, is not capitalized, and it suggests more that one by its plural form.
Deutoronomy 6:4 tells us
Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God [is] one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:
Matthew 6:24 lets us know that we can serve mammon (false gods) or God and that it is a choice. This verse inculcates that mammon can be put before and dwell alongside faith in God; instead of its place being below God, it can be operating before Him, and it can be served as you would serve God. Jesus makes this statement, but it is our individual responsibility to adhere to it. It is calling for examination in order to focus. Are you serving God and mammon? Only you can answer that.
Let's qualify mammon and what it means, Wealth, money, lucre, greed, ambition, it is a greedy pursuit of riches governed by avarice and worldly gain and is personified by a false god. The false god of riches can become a distraction which leads to putting things created before and above the Creator, who created them. In some case scenarios it is putting the creature before the Creator. It could be a husband, wife, children, family, and friend, they are all creatures and don't merit the exclusive place only the Creator should have in our hearts and souls
The judgment the law expresses is for us to see ourselves in the right light. take the first Commandment for instance, "Thou shalt not have no other gods before me". To those who think the law has been done away with, can we afford to allow this principle of the law to go? Can we as a society afford not to trust is one God? It is written on our money, "in"God we trust". yet the love of money is producing something evil in hearts, and is an unfavorable, insatiable avarice, and greed for it. Either you will possess money, or it will possess you. Tell the truth, who is the god we are said to trust in on money? We are counseled by the commandment not to exalt anything or anyone before God, not even money.
The verse uses the word before me, it is often confused with above me. This is a challenge in a world where money is needed for everything material we can possibly need or desire. The question is do we need and desire God as much as money? That is of course a very difficult question to answer honestly without The Spirit of judgment and the Spirit of Burning. Judgment exposes desires, intents and motives of our hearts; and then we need to be purged and pruned of the dross, that is dead works. We need a balanced diet or regimen of grace and judgment or we will be unbalanced. We live in and through grace; and grace doesn't produce the reprobate which has no use for judgment, it is not judging our actions and self that produces the reprobate.
The Scripture declares that God gave them over to a reprobate mind. We are intimated by words such as sin and judgment; defenses will rise up rapidly when we hear these words, why do we fear judgment, when perfect love casts out all fear. Jesus counseled that if we would judge ourselves, we wouldn't be judged. What is the hindrance of self judgment? We may see some things we do not like about ourselves, but we have gifts of grace and mercy, then why do we fear judgment? It depends on who is judging? The Word of God is the judge whether we realize it or not. Coming into the knowledge of God's will makes judgment bearable, The Holy Spirit is here to reprove the world of sin, judgment and righteousness. We must ascertain how imperative law really is and create our value system based on how does God feel about things we value equal or before Him. Only the first Commandment spells it out for us. Isn't it a realistic endeavor, as we realize He only wants the best for each and everyone of us.
The Church is the only voice ordained of God left in and on the earth. I know she isn't going to stop teaching and preaching righteousness. The Spirit of purity and cleanliness is magnificence and evidently wondrous. Can you see the glory in adherence to the will of God through the law. It is the voice of judgment that we need in order not to become reprobate and void of judging ourselves and sin, and so that we can clearly see if and when we are putting other gods before the only true and living God-Creator.
It seems easier to not put anything before the Creator, because we know He is the one and only and we know, that we know, they didn't create the universe and everything in it, and to shut it down! We must have a working value system that qualifies the Creator as supreme, His Word, His Spirit and His Will having preeminence over all. In Exodus 20, it tells us that God spoke all the words we know as the Ten Commandments into manifestation. He explained to Israel that He was the Lord God that brought them out of the land of Egypt, and out of the house of bondage.
Upon this premise He inscribed, Thou shalt have no other gods before me. In other words, nothing is to be put in the place of God Almighty, He needs us to focus on what does it mean to have no other gods before Him? I sincerely hope you will ask yourself this question, as this hub is the result of my asking myself this question, and I have fallen short of this command, but I repent for missing the mark. Repentance is the only answer in order to proceed forward and be sanctified by the full counsel of His Word and truth. Grace and Peace.
I repent of not adhering to Your Commandments and breaking this covenant of Your Will. Your Will has not changed and never shall. Thank you for Your Word and Grace!