Tag Archives: to obey is better than sacrifice

The Golden Calf of Religious Service

Deuteronomy 9:15-17
“So I turned and came down from the mountain while the mountain was burning with fire, and the two tablets of the covenant were in my two hands.16 “And I saw that you had indeed sinned against the Lord your God. You had made for yourselves a molten calf; you had turned aside quickly from the way which the Lord had commanded you.17 “I took hold of the two tablets and threw them from my hands and smashed them before your eyes.

Here we have two scenarios side by side: a mountain burning w/ fire, Moses the prophet, and the law. Right next to it you have all of the nation of Israel caught up in idolatry and false worship. In the midst of the Lord revealing His glory and His Holiness you have a rebellious people doing their own thing and calling it worship. The people did not want to stand before God, they wanted Moses to go to the mountain and hear God on their behalf. Perhaps deep down in their hearts, they knew that if they got a revelation of a Holy God that they would have to change and quite simply they didn’t want to do that. There is something within man that prefers religious duties over being transformed by God. It is part of the sinful, Adamic nature to follow the path of least resistance. Change requires discipline, discipline can be uncomfortable, difficult, very challenging, it costs! However the price to remain the same cost us nothing and if we add a little religious activity to the cost of not changing then we can get a false sense of working for our salvation. We can walk out of the church, prayer meeting or Bible study feeling like God is really proud of us, after all look at how much of our time we just sacrificed for Him. However, God’s will is not directed to how much time we sacrifice in religious activity, the measure of true spirituality in the sight of God is always obedience, “…to obey is better than sacrifice.”

Romans 12:1-2

1 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Our true worship does not lie in how many church services we attend, not how many hours we spent in prayer or even how much we witnessed to the lost this week. Obviously all of those things are very important, however our true worship lies in the discipline of learning and obeying. Learning not to be conformed to this world, learning from our divine mentor Truth that transforms our thinking and transforms us! That is true Worship a transformed Life, lived in holiness before a holy God!

Leave a comment

Filed under Religion