Back in the day, when I had to walk to school in the snow uphill both ways, we had this thing people used to do called writing notes. In case you’re not familiar, it’s when a person holds a sharp, yellow, number two pencil or a Bic pen in their hand and begins to form words on a piece of parchment, we called paper. It was a magical time!
In case you didn’t know it, these notes people used to write held a lot of power. They decided who liked who in grade school by simply checking yes or no. They invited you to parties and, for a very special few, they even got you out of P.E. when you wrote a fake note from mom (not me!)
Bottom line, those notes mattered and had the power to change the course of your week, day and life.
What you might not know is that God is in to writing notes. Once, “When the Lord finished speaking with Moses on Mount Sinai, he gave him the two stone tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant, written by the finger of God.” (Exodus 31:18)
Now if there was ever a note that mattered it’s the one written by the very finger of God. It holds a lot of weight because in it God sets his ground rules for serving him and ultimately points us to Jesus.
What’s in this note written by the finger of God? Nothing less than the big ten. Otherwise known as the Ten Commandments.
Today we’re going to look at the first two of the Ten Commandments and why the big ten still matter.
1. You must not have any other god but me.
Everything hinges on this first command. If you miss this one, the other nine commandments are going to be all but impossible to do. You have to first get this one right. That’s why God put it first.
Once Jesus was asked which one of God’s commands was the greatest. He responded by saying, “’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.” (Matthew 22:37-38)
There is nothing more important in your life than loving God. That is God’s first commandment to us. He needs to be the one and only God in our life.
Which leads us to the second command in the big ten.
2. You must not make yourself an idol.
Let’s be clear, God hates idolatry in any and every form. When God wrote the ten commandments to his people, they were surrounded by nations who worshiped man-made idols, carved by their own hands. Their worship of these idols often consisted of rampant prostitution, sex worship and child sacrifices. Those were the extremes and God was not a fan.
Around the world people still worship man-made idols in various forms and in various ways.
But there is another form of idol worship that God detests just as much. And it’s anything in your life that steals away the worship that belongs to God. It’s putting your trust and dependance on something else besides God. That could be money, success, hobbies, love, fame, looks, social media, politics… I think you get the drift.
The idol in your life is whatever you’ve set up to be more important than the God who created you.
These first two commandments really go hand in hand.
So, here’s my question. Who is really number one in your life? Is it God? If not, I think it’s time for a change.
God wrote you a personal note telling you how to relate to him. Take it seriously. Make him first.
Think about it:
- What idol have you set up in your life to take God’s place?
- Is it time for a life change?
Verse of the Day:
“’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.” (Matthew 22:37-38)