“All of you who are on the Lord’s side, come here and join me” (Exodus 32:26)   Leave a comment

Gold cow

The Golden calf

So he stood at the entrance to the camp and shouted, “All of you who are on the Lord’s side, come here and join me..” Exodus 32:26

Moses was on the mount to receive the law and meanwhile the Israelites made a golden calf and were dancing. He destroyed the tablets written by God and burned down the golden calf out of anger.

Moses asked to Aaron:

Finally, he turned to Aaron and demanded, “What did these people do to you to make you bring such terrible sin upon them?

Aaron replied:

Don’t get so upset, my lord,” Aaron replied. “You yourself know how evil these people are. They said to me, ‘Make us gods who will lead us….”

Moses saw that Aaron had let the people get completely out of control, much to the amusement of their enemies.So he stood at the entrance to the camp and shouted, “All of you who are on the Lord’s side, come here and join me.” And all the Levites gathered around him.

The Levites did not participate in this gross sin. They were on the Lord’s side. Judgment will follow even on the sons and daughters of these Levites. 3000 people died that day.

Then Moses told the Levites, “Today you have ordained yourselves for the service of the Lord, for you obeyed him even though it meant killing your own sons and brothers. Today you have earned a blessing.” Ex 32:29

Moses went to plead for the forgiveness of those who sinned but God refused and sent a plague. This was a terrible moment.

But the Lord replied to Moses, “No, I will erase the name of everyone who has sinned against me. Now go, lead the people to the place I told you about. Look! My angel will lead the way before you. And when I come to call the people to account, I will certainly hold them responsible for their sins.”

Before Joshua died, he assembled the people of Israel to renew God’s covenant.

He asked:

So fear the Lord and serve him wholeheartedly. Put away forever the idols your ancestors worshiped when they lived beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord alone.But if you refuse to serve the Lord, then choose today whom you will serve. Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates?” Joshua 24:14

Joshua’s decision was clear for him and his family. He said “Hey people I don’t know about you but my family and I will follow the Lord” :

But as for me and my family, we will serve the Lord

Choose today who you will serve. Serve the Lord alone. This is what we should ask us today. Are we serving Him alone or do we have some golden calves like the Israelites had?

Elijah said:

And Elijah came near to all the people and said, “How long will you go limping between two different opinions? If the Lord is God, follow him; but if Baal, then follow him.”  1 Kings 18:21

Joshua asked the people well, are you sure you want to serve the Lord? He warned them through these words:

Then Joshua warned the people, “You are not able to serve the Lord, for he is a holy and jealous God. He will not forgive your rebellion and your sins. If you abandon the Lord and serve other gods, he will turn against you and destroy you, even though he has been so good to you.”But the people answered Joshua, “No, we will serve the Lord!

If we have decided to follow Jesus, we need to think well that this will mean that our whole life will belong to Him. For Jesus is Holy and a jealous God If you abandon the Lord and serve other gods, he will turn against you and destroy you, even though he has been so good to you”

Jesus’ standard is holiness and perfection. By ourselves we will not be able to become like Him. He made provision for it and gave us everything we needed to become like Him. What He only asks is to remain in Him and let Him reign in us. We just have to obey and do what He wishes. Let the Spirit of God transforms you! Are you ready for it? There will be no turning back if you say yes. If you turn back after taking this decision, your judgment will be more severe(2 Pet 2:21).

The Israelites said: “No, we will serve the Lord”.

Joshua said again, “Hey people be careful of what you saying!”.

You are a witness to your own decision,” Joshua said. “You have chosen to serve the Lord.” Yes,” they replied, “we are witnesses to what we have said.”“All right then,” Joshua said, “destroy the idols among you, and turn your hearts to the Lord, the God of Israel.”The people said to Joshua, “We will serve the Lord our God. We will obey him alone.” Jos 24:22

Only Him they will serve and only Him they will obey they said.

Joshua made a covenant that day. No one was forced to take this decision.

So Joshua made a covenant with the people that day at Shechem, committing them to follow the decrees and regulations of the Lord. Joshua recorded these things in the Book of God’s Instructions. As a reminder of their agreement, he took a huge stone and rolled it beneath the terebinth tree beside the Tabernacle of the Lord.Joshua said to all the people, “This stone has heard everything the Lord said to us. It will be a witness to testify against you if you go back on your word to God.” v25

Have you taken this radical decision to follow Jesus? If yes, remember how serious it is. You’re accountable for it for no one forced you to follow and obey Him. If you have not decided to follow Jesus, TODAY is the right time the bible says:

Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.” 2 Cor 6:2

Don’t say tomorrow, tomorrow is too late. Today is the day to choose if you want to follow Jesus. There’s no guarantee you’ll say yes tomorrow if you say no TODAY. Repent now if you want to follow Jesus and make a covenant with Him. But be careful! If you choose TODAY to follow Him, you’ll have to abide in Him and obey. Your life will change. No one can force you to take this decision.

Hebrews 3:7 says:

That is why the Holy Spirit says,

Today when you hear his voice,don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled,when they tested me in the wilderness.There your ancestors tested and tried my patience,even though they saw my miracles for forty years.So I was angry with them, and I said,‘Their hearts always turn away from me.They refuse to do what I tell them.’So in my anger I took an oath:‘They will never enter my place of rest. Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God. You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God.For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ. Remember what it says:“Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled.”

TODAY if you hear His voice don’t harden your heart like a stone. Don’t rebel but repent. If your heart has been hardened by sin’s deceitfulness, repent now! If you have started to backslide, TODAY is the day to get right with God! Do not say you did not know. TODAY is the day to reconcile.

We are like the Levites, the elects. We are those who Christ purchased by His blood and made out a kingdom of priest(1 Pet 2:9) prepared to do good works. We belong to Him. If Jesus asked : “All of you who are on the Lord’s side, come here and join me” ,will you be the one on the Lord’s side or the one rejoicing because of the golden calf?

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.Hebrews 12:1

There’re many godly people who came before us and left a good example for us to follow. They are like in a stadium watching and shouting out “Keep on running”. Get rid of everything which is hindering you. We are like running on a rolling stairs in the opposite direction.

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” Rom 12:2

Do not conform to the pattern of this world. The world is always pulling us and if we stop to walk we are being dragged in it’s direction like being on rolling stairs.

If you walk you remain in the same place and the only way to move forward is to run. We run towards perfection.

Paul said:

Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified.” 1 Cor 9:24

Paul is using a metaphor to explain the attitude of the runner. He does not run with a sad face but runs with confidence. He runs because He wants to finish this race as soon as possible. It’s not a competition between Christians but an individual attitude to demonstrate our willingness to get this prize as soon as possible. Our prizes will differ because God has different plans for us. But we should run with a purpose. God has his own way to make us run with endurance. You train yourself by letting God mold you. You get rid of things entangling you and want to meet your Master on the finishing line. Your race might be shorter or longer than others, it does not matter. It’s between your Trainer and you. You’re not running because of others but because of your Master. This race will permit your Trainer to make you in His image(2 Cor3:18). An athlete will not find improvements in his performance if he stops to run and parties. On the contrary, he will gain weight and regress. Run this special marathon God specially designed for you!

If TODAY you realise you’re not in a God’s marathon, get engaged with Jesus TODAY. If you have already taken this engagement to follow Jesus and found that you stopped to run on the way, TODAY is the day to start again your training. It might not be easy at the beginning but with time you’ll lose those unnecessary weight slowing you and be more fit to run that race. If you’re running, keep on improving your endurance!

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Posted January 19, 2013 by Cedric in My writings (English)

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