Choose One God

Judges One God

Read Judges 6:25-34

25 That night the Lord said to him, “Take your father’s bull, and the second bull seven years old, and pull down the altar of Baal that your father has, and cut down the Asherah that is beside it 26 and build an altar to the Lord your God on the top of the stronghold here, with stones laid in due order. Then take the second bull and offer it as a burnt offering with the wood of the Asherah that you shall cut down.” 27 So Gideon took ten men of his servants and did as the Lord had told him. But because he was too afraid of his family and the men of the town to do it by day, he did it by night.

28 When the men of the town rose early in the morning, behold, the altar of Baal was broken down, and the Asherah beside it was cut down, and the second bull was offered on the altar that had been built. 29 And they said to one another, “Who has done this thing?” And after they had searched and inquired, they said, “Gideon the son of Joash has done this thing.” 30 Then the men of the town said to Joash, “Bring out your son, that he may die, for he has broken down the altar of Baal and cut down the Asherah beside it.” 31 But Joash said to all who stood against him, “Will you contend for Baal? Or will you save him? Whoever contends for him shall be put to death by morning. If he is a god, let him contend for himself, because his altar has been broken down.” 32 Therefore on that day, Gideon was called Jerubbaal, that is to say, “Let Baal contend against him,” because he broke down his altar.

In the following verses, we see God commanding the unsure Gideon to build an altar for Him. It was a sign and remembrance that God is with them and that He never left them but out of fear, Gideon built the altar at night.

But in building an altar for the Lord, it was signifying the destroying of another god. God was telling the Israelites to choose between Him or Baal (the mini-god) that has caused so much trouble for them. The reason there were many altars was that the Israelites chose to worship many gods and not choose one to whom they would give their wholehearted worship. But God won’t allow such worship.

Keypoint #1: You can have two Gods. Either choose the one or the other. God demands wholehearted worship and devotion to Him.

I remember growing up in this kind of environment. As somebody belonging to a fairly traditional Filipino-Chinese family, we had many gods at home that we worship. We had statues of Jesus, Sto Nino, Buddha, the seven Chinese gods and many other more. My dad builds a room dedicated to all these gods. In his mind, he was thinking that if one god did not answer his prayer, there are other options. In retrospect, my dad though his actions acts as the ultimate god to whom all god must listen to.

“The gods have not changed, for human nature has not changed, and these are the gods that humanity regularly recreates for itself. What does it want? If it is modest – security, comfort, and reasonable enjoyment; if ambitious – power and wealth and unbridled self-indulgence. In every age, there are forces at work which promise to meet out desires – all having one feature in common. They promised they can make our lives better than we can make them ourselves, yet at the same time, they appear amenable to our manipulating them so we can get what we want without losing our independence. We say we worship the Lord…but the world has crept in and controls our heart”. – Michael Wilcox

As we can see in the story, the greatest enemy of the Israelites were not the Midianites but the other gods that they worshipped. The gods we worship shapes our values and beliefs. They needed to get rid of the idols of their heart if they want to move forward in life.

Keypoint #2: We have as humans the tendency to make idols who take God’s place in our lives. Either Jesus is Lord of all or not at all.

Talk it over:

  1. Are there any idols that God is dealing with you? Any person, material, an ambition that consumes you more than God? Please share with your group.
  2. Why do some people have a hard time making Jesus the Lord and master of their life? How about you? 


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