consider this, you who forget God

The way I see God's name being thrown about in social and political discussions today is a travesty. No, a blasphemy.

Every day I see people using Jesus to justify everything from higher taxes to open borders to saving puppies to the complete overturn of moral law. Many times, it's the same people who fight the hardest for a separation of church and state - the same people who consider the Bible an antiquated and inaccurate text that has no relevance to our time, or who market the falsehood that our founding fathers were atheists, or who kneel and sacrifice every day to the god of Feeling Good (or, better named, Self).

This is not going to be a political argument, because the problem reaches so much wider and deeper than politics - it reaches into the fabric and fates of our souls. The truth is, there is a vile deception at work behind any careless use of God's name. It reminds me of a few verses in Psalm 50:

But to the wicked God says, "What right have you to tell of My statutes and to take My covenant in your mouth? For you hate discipline, and you cast My words behind you. When you see a thief, you are pleased with him, and you associate with adulterers. You let your mouth loose in evil and your tongue frames deceit. You sit and speak against your brother; you slander your mother's son. These things you have done and I kept silence; you thought I was just like you; I will reprove you and state the case in order before your eyes."
Psalm 50:16-21

There it is:

You thought I was just like you.

This is the crux of the matter, the root of every blasphemy and the core of all idolatry, the greatest deception of our time: God must be like me. It's the defining of God around ourselves, our feelings, and our reality, rather than defining ourselves, our feelings, and our reality around Him.

But His name and His Word have no place in the mouth of one who would use them solely for self-justification, false piety, and deceit. You don't get to whip out the Jesus card when it makes you feel good, worthy, powerful, or right and then make a mockery of His holiness with your life. You have then effectively cast away God's Word as nothing more than trash to be trampled, having cherry-picked what serves you and discarded what requires you to serve Him.

God is not like you.

He is perfectly loving, perfectly just, perfectly gracious, and perfectly holy.

He cannot celebrate sin. He cannot mix with it. He is not satisfied with your lip-service or impressed by your man-made values system, even if you put His name on it. When Jesus was on earth, he called these people "hypocrites," and reserved some of the harshest words of the New Testament for them:

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish; but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee, first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish, so that the outside of it may become clean also.
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men's bones and all uncleanness. So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.
Matthew 23:25-28

Hypocrisy: insincerity; literally "acting under a mask"

Lawlessness: making up one's own rules in total disregard for God's Law

If you are trying to cram God into your own mold, you are a hypocrite - a lover of self masked by imitation righteousness. You are a blasphemer - you treat Him as a commodity to be used, not as your Creator or your King. You are an idolater - your god is yourself, not the Holy One of Israel. You are lawless - you have made up your own rules and completely ignored His. God is not like you.

Thankfully.

God is not like you, and because of that, His perfect grace and justice have allowed for a solution - a pathway to freedom from your shackles of sin, from your prison of self-worship, from your insatiable hunger to feel good, worthy, powerful, and right.

Now consider this, you who forget God, or I will tear you in pieces, and there will be none to deliver. He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving honors Me; and to him who orders his way aright I shall show the salvation of God."
Psalm 50:22-23

Order your way aright - define yourself, your feelings, and your reality around who God is - and you will see the true salvation of God. You will see yourself as you are when you see Him as He is, and that there is no hope and no freedom and no satisfaction outside of your Rescuer, Jesus.

Or continue to treat Him like your trump card and personal genie until grace time is over and there is none to deliver.

You have a choice; serve the true God for eternity or serve yourself for the moment, but don't slap His name over your wickedness hoping you can secretly have both.

Sometimes we want God to be just like us. We want Him to approve our behaviors, to get behind our causes, to believe in our convictions. But He is not like us - and His name and His Word have no place in the mouth of anyone who uses them solely for self-justification, false-piety, and deceit.
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Hallie Liening

Hallie grew up on a small farm in rural eastern Washington. At 18, she moved across the country to go to Bible school, and then married the Boy Next Door at 20. Now 22, she is a graduate of Great Commission Bible Institute with a Certificate in Biblical Studies and resides in Olympia with her husband and her two cats. She survives the claustrophobia of living near the city by making frequent trips back home to visit her family and her horse, writing sentimental blog posts about the countryside, and by filling her house with photographs of Mt. Adams sunsets.