Welcome to Redeem the Commute. I’m Ryan, your host for this daily challenge. It’s Thursday, the day we try to apply and live out what we’ve learned this week from the Bible. This week we’ve been studying how God is one, and was enraged when his People Israel worshipped a golden calf instead of him.
Moses’ brother Aaron played a big part in this event. People looked to him as a leader, and he blew it. It’s possible he tried to help them stop, but he didn’t try hard enough.
You would expect him to take the brunt of God’s anger – described as burning hot, and wrath.
Not everyone likes to hear God described in those terms. It’s become pretty unfashionable to admit God could be angry or worse, wrathful. We’d rather hear about God’s love and acceptance and mercy. But God is described in both ways in the Bible.
And in this story we see it. God is angry, wrathful, and jealous. He’s enraged his people would worship anyone other than himself, who just saved them from certain death.
But God lets them, and Aaron, survive. They’ll never forget this – the stone tablets are broken forever to show how humanity has broken God’s laws. But, they lived to tell that story. That’s where God’s mercy and love shows – he doesn’t give them what they deserve.
God is a God of grace, so he does even better. He gives them more than they deserve – he forgives them and maintains a relationship of loving care with them. They are still his people, still on the way to the promised land.
A golden calf can only take from people. It needed their gold, it took their time, worship, energy, emotion and trust. And it could do nothing for them.
But Yahweh, the one true God, could love, know and forgive this people.
And this is what still matters today. God is still a God whose laws matter, and we are still a people who break them. Look back at the ten commandments from last week, and see if you can truly say you’ve broken no commandments. It’s impossible, we all fall short of God’s standards. We all deserve God’s wrath and anger.
And yet, God is still one who forgives. He’s the only one who forgives.
Prayerfully reflect on these questions: What am I desiring that I shouldn’t? What am I giving my time to that I shouldn’t? What is taking God’s place in my life? Confess your sin to God. Then do whatever it takes to change wrong thinking and bad habits that put other things higher in your life than God.
Challenge: Spend your commute exclusively on God – in prayer, or listening to worship music, or an audio book, or reviewing some of our courses or older challenges.