Today’s Reading – Exodus 19-21; Proverbs 26
(Second Milers also read Luke 6 & 7; memorize Psalm 119:9)
“And Moses went down from the mount unto the people, and sanctified the people; and they washed their clothes. And he said unto the people, Be ready against the third day: come not at your wives. And it came to pass on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud upon the mount, and the voice of the trumpet exceeding loud; so that all the people that was in the camp trembled. And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and they stood at the nether part of the mount.” – (Exodus 19:14-17)
Notice in chapter 19 the reverence the people had when they were entering into the presence of God. They washed their clothes; they abstained from physical intimacy; and they trembled. I bet that there was not one person from the congregation that was not present. I bet the children were silent; being kept under very close watch of their parents. The people understood that they meeting with the omnipotent Creator of the universe. He is holy and He was not to be approached by the people of Israel in a flippant and carefree manner. They came with a reverent attitude of worship.
Fast forward now to today. Many people show up late, if they show up at all. They arrive wearing shorts and ripped tee shirts. The children are running all over the sanctuary while their parent are obliviously engaging in their own conversations about anything and everything except the worship of God. We have certainly come a long way down in our reverence to God. We sing half heartedly; talk during prayer and special music; and then sleep when the Word of God is being preached: all the while wondering how long is this going to take. We’ve got more important things like football to worry about today. Do I exaggerate, or is this an accurate description of the attitudes of many in our churches today? God help us!
Now, I wish to be very clear about this: I do not consider myself to be a legalist at all. I understand completely that salvation comes solely through a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, beginning with faith in His shed blood at the cross of Calvary. I know that God is not impressed when we show up at the church with our white shirts and ties, or our long, modest dresses. I get that. I know that God dwelleth not in temples made with men’s hands; and that the believer’s heart is the temple of God. And I realize that God looks upon the heart; and if a man shows up at church in shorts and a ripped tee shirt because that is all he has, or perhaps because he doesn’t know better, I think God is pleased. I know I am. Believe me, I am thrilled that people just show up, and I am not the least bit concerned about the way they are dressed. I am, however, very concerned about the heart attitude of God’s people today when they come to worship the infinite, omniscient, omnipresent, and all-powerful God. It’s not a ball game. We are not gathering together simply to meet with friends, or to hear a man speak. We are corporately entering into the presence of God. We have become way to casual and careless. People give more thought when they are meeting with earthly dignitaries. God help us to remember that worship is a holy undertaking. Let’s give God our very best attention. I want people to come as they are, but I want them also to realize Who it is they are coming to worship, and I would like also to see the leave a little more conformed to His image. I think this “seeker sensitive” thing has gotten way out of hand. Should we not be a little more “Saviour sensitive”.
Posted in Devotions by Phil Erickson with 3 comments.