Summary: A sermon dealing the dangers of idolatry for God's people.
“Who’s Your Daddy?”
Exodus 20:3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God…
First, before anybody gets confused about the title of this message today let me explain what I mean by the expression, “Who’s Your Daddy?” Most of us have heard this slang at one time or the other and it basically refers to the one who gave you life, who do you love, who do you resemble, who is your Father?
Romans 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Josh McDowell gave a loose translation of this word and it goes something like, “Da da…”
I. The Prohibition
You have to wonder what part of “no” did the Israelites not understand because they were continuously having troubles with this issue. The question is, “Why?”
a. Their antiquity
For 400 years they had been in Egypt. If you count 40 years as a generation then 10 generations of Jacob’s descendants had been exposed to the polytheism of the Egyptian culture. Whether we are willing to admit it or not our exposure to the culture we live in does have an effect on us. Many of them had a diluted and diminished faith in Jehovah, while many more had left the “faith of their Fathers” and were worshipping the “gods of Egypt.”
Romans 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
b. Their attraction
The practice of religion, even a pagan religion is powerfully attractive to the flesh. Just think about what people will do to “worship” their gods!
ILL - The world is in a crisis of confusion concerning the ch0
aracter and the nature of God. Just as paganism and polytheism tainted the ancient Near Eastern world, our society is influenced by corrupted views of God. The names have changed, but the false gods they represented have not. Instead of Baal, we have new age philosophy; instead of the Sun god Ra, we have Eastern Mysticism, with its worship of Creation; instead of Ashtoreth, we have the worship of supermodels and the sexuality they represent. Instead of idols made of silver, gold and wood, we have consumerism, materialism, humanism, meditation, and a host of other philosophies that draw from the same cesspool of idolatry represented by the gods of the Canaanites.”
“Like the prophets of Scripture, our task as spiritual leaders is to call the people away from the confusion polytheism to the clarity of monotheistic God of Scripture. Like Elijah on Mount Carmel, we are called to challenge people to choose between the God of the Bible and the gods of the culture”
Source: Glenn C. Daman, Leading the Small Church: How to Develop a Transformational Ministry, pp. 105, 106.
c. Their attachment
Long after the Israelites had left Egypt, Egypt had not left them for we read of their attachment to this pagan land.
At the Red Sea:
Exodus 14:12 Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.
Exodus 15:24 And the people murmured against Moses, saying, What shall we drink?
At the wilderness of Sin:
Exodus 16:3 And the children of Israel said unto them, Would to God we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh pots, and when we did eat bread to the full; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.
Exodus 17:3 And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Wherefore is this that thou hast brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?
What do all these statements have in common? They are all reflections of the selfishness of these people.
Next, let me say that it’s not enough to worship the right God, we must worship the right God in the right way!
II. The Perversion
Notice that verse 4 of our text also includes the prohibition against fashioning any kind of image which would be a perversion of the commandment. These folks decided that they wanted an image to represent Elohim so they went to Aaron and we read what follows: