Fast Devotional – Day Three
Text: Deuteronomy 12:1-14
Written by: Lynn Smith
In today’s passage, we find God’s commands to the children of Israel for worship. Before we can worship God, there must be places where we no longer worship. In the ancient world it was common practice to repurpose buildings because there was always a shortage of buildings. They might take a nice building like a temple where another god had been worshiped, and simply turn it into a place where they would worship their god. God commanded them to stop this practice. He demanded the children of Israel to completely destroy these places. This destruction must not only be physical (tearing down the old building) but also spiritual (also destroying the pagan places in their hearts).
God gave specific commands as to how and where to worship. Worship was not left to opinions or whims. They must worship God in the place where he commanded and, in the method, He commanded, which included bringing burnt offerings, sacrifices, tithes and such. Worship was to be a place of atonement, confession, giving, and joyful fellowship – both with God and others.
How does this apply to us today? As children of God, like the Israelites, God commands and expects us to worship him. We are to have no other gods. Other gods and places of worship must be destroyed as God is a jealous God and will tolerate no person or thing coming before him.
What or where do you worship that you need to destroy? While we may no longer pray to idols, there are many things which can become idols. Even good things can become idols, like our children, family, sports, money, or many other things.
Dear God, forgive us when we have allowed other things to surpass you in our hearts. Convict us and lead us to put aside anything which will prevent complete and utter devotion to you. Thank you for your sacrifice of your son and let us show our thankfulness by continued and undivided worship of you. In Jesus’ name, Amen!