Day 48 – No Other God
On: December 18, 2014   |   By: admin   |   Under: Blog   |   Comments: Comments are off

“The devil led Jesus up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he said to him, ‘I will give you all their authority and splendour; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. If you worship me, it will all be yours.’ Jesus answered, ‘It is written: “Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.”‘” [Luke 4:5-8]

If you worship me it will all be yours

If temptation no 1 was about personal identity and comfort, no 2 is about status and loyalties. Probably well summed up by the familiar expression “selling your soul to the devil”. The scene feels a bit “Disney”. Picture the devil appearing out of a puff of smoke, creating a shimmering image of worldly glory with a dramatic swish of his hand, moving close to Jesus’ ear and whispering insinuatingly, “How would you like all this?”, then rising suddenly to a towering height and roaring “Worship me, yes ME, and it’s all yours.”

Actually, no! The approach, to Jesus then and us today, would have been far more plausible. Far better disguised, but nevertheless, as with all things of Satan, distorted. Maybe a temptation, over a drink or two, to score a brownie point with the boss by joining them in slagging someone off behind their back and making ourselves look “in the know”. Or thinking that having the coolest car on the street will make me better than my neighbour. You’ll think of better examples, but I hope you get the picture.

The devil is real. His aim is to draw us away from Jesus, as he tried to draw Jesus away from His Father. Supposedly to boost our own cred. But, in reality, to shift our focus away from God onto him.  If we are to be followers of Jesus, we must be clear where our loyalties lie; (Exodus 20:2-3): “I am the Lord your God … You shall have no other gods before me.” We can’t mix and match, professing faith in God, but looking after our own image. They’re mutually exclusive.

Prayer:

Father God, it’s easy to smile at the idea of being lured into idol worship by the devil. But I can all too easily find myself doing it. Open my eyes to my own weakness and forgive me when I’m tempted to draw the glory to myself rather than reflecting it onto You, where it belongs. Amen.

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