Do You Remember?4 min read
While reading the book of Exodus, I noticed that after the Isrealites got into the wilderness God introduced the guidelines for everyday living and worship. Like most people, reading through the numerous requirements for setting up the tent, ordaining the High Priest, purification, sacrifice, atonement and so much more can be quite overwhelming. Then you follow that up with the guidelines how they should live – it’s a whole package. But after a while, I start getting the picture God was trying to create in their hearts.
The Isrealites had spent over 400 years in Egypt and they had become so accustomed to the way of life and worship that the Egyptians had created. The Egyptians worshiped a plethora of gods depending on the need or occasion. The plagues was God’s way of making nonsense of all the gods of Egypt
- Turning the Nile to blood (powerlessness of the Egyptian river deities, such as Hapi, the god of the Nile),
- The frogs (God’s power over the Egyptian goddess of childbirth and fertility, Heket, who was depicted as a frog or a woman with a frog’s head),
- The insects (God could control insects, whereas the Egyptian insect gods, such as Sepa and Khepri, offered no protection),
- Death of cattle (mocked the Egyptian cattle gods, such as Hathor, the highly regarded cow goddess, and Apis, the much-celebrated bull god), boils (an attack on Sekhmet, the Egyptian goddess of physicians and healers),
- Hail (God’s power greater than the gods of thunder, rain, and storms such as Min and Set),
- Locusts ( which came on the lengthy and powerful east wind were an affront to the goddess Isis, who supposedly provided favorable winds for sailors),
- Darkness (showed God’s contempt for Egypt’s sun god Ra and the sunrise deity Horus) and
- Death of first born (rendered the Egyptian deity Isis as ineffective. Isis was a patron goddess of childbirth and motherhood, and was one of the oldest goddesses of ancient Egypt. In addition, Pharaohs are regarded as sons of Ra, the supreme state god. The death of the prince was to show the helplessness of Ra)
Imagine coming from a society like that – a different god for every time and reason. Now you get introduced to a God who says He is the only one for all seasons and time. The question now is “How do you remember that and also condition your mind to embrace that?”.
So God started with basics – introduce a pattern that covers every aspect of life. Little wonder, He introduced rituals and behaviour that covered every aspect of life – agriculture, marriage, parenthood, worship life, personal hygiene, conflict resolution, business negotiation, property administration. In this way, He communicates that He is the God of all of every aspect of their lives – He does not exist in a silo like the gods of Egypt.
In so many ways, our society has become a modern version of Egypt – we have a set of ruling “gods” for every aspect of life. In the colloquial, we are told to “use our church-mind” in the church and adapt our behaviour to the new gods of the urban jungle.
Well, coming to Jesus Christ is a call to giving every aspect of our life to One God. There are no separations – only one life lived for one God. So how does He keep us remembering? Through His Holy Spirit, He reminds our conscience every time of how He wants us to live. The more we open our conscience to the work of His Holy Spirit, the more we find ourselves responding to the world in a way that pleases Him.
So what is the evidence that I remember all God should be to me in every aspect living – when I show the world through the way I live that I love them the way God loves them. But in light of the polymorphous love definitions out there, this becomes increasingly difficult to do. But God has not left us without clarity. The Bible is the balance to how we should express God’s love.
I recall after my conversion experience with no one to look to for example, I decided I was going to read the Gospels (Matthew – John) to model an example for myself. I was going to look at the way Jesus responded to life and respond to life in similar fashion. I can’t say I completely hit the bullseye everytime but I was definately led right.
So let me leave you with a question. Are you living your life like you serve one God or do you have a god for every season?
Reference – What were the 10 plagues of Egypt?