Words from the Heart for Friday January 11th, 2019
Then come, let us go up to Bethel, where I will build an altar to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and who has been with me wherever I have gone.
Genesis 35:3 (NIV)
An Altar at Bethel
In an effort to help Lance-Cpl. James Ernest Muth overcome the pain of the gas attacks and shrapnel wounds he suffered fighting at Vimy Ridge and Amiens in the First World War, he was taught to do intricate needlework. While recuperating in England before returning home to Canada, he was introduced to stitching by women from Britain’s Royal School of Needlework. The women helped him make an embroidery that found a home on the altar at London’s famed St. Paul’s Cathedral.
It is so easy to let the world creep into our lives. Before we realize it, our relationship with the Lord has become secondary and we find we have grown cold spiritually. It doesn’t happen overnight. This has always been the case. The story of the people of Israel is the creeping idolatry – idols from the nations around them. This was the case even in Jacob’s day. So God gives Jacob a command and in Genesis 35:3 He faithfully calls the people of Israel to obey: “Then come, let us go up to Bethel, where I will build an altar to God, who answered me in the day of my distress and who has been with me wherever I have gone.” God had called Jacob to build an altar and worship the God who had been so faithful to him. The people obeyed, and brought their idols to be buried in the ground. Because of their faithful obedience to God’s command, God promises that He will form them into a nation and will give them land. We will know the blessing of God as well, as we set aside all the idols that we have set up in our lives, and worship the Lord Jesus alone.
These have been words from the heart.