God is full of grace, steadfast love, and covenant commitment. But this does not mean that God is okay with sin. He does not shrug his divine shoulders in a “meh” kind of attitude. In fact, grace does not exist apart from sin. Where there is boundless grace and compassion there will be found bucket loads of sin. And, oh my, was there a load of sin among the ancient Israelites! They were characterized as stiff-necked, stubborn, rebellious, and idolatrous. This is the kind of stuff that evokes the ire of God.
The truly godly person is the one who shares God’s heart and interests; what upsets God, upsets him/her; what makes God pleased, makes him/her pleased. Notice Moses’ response to the people’s idolatry and sin: he was visibly angered; he confronted the people with their sin; and, he engaged in an extended time of fasting and prayer on their behalf.
Lackadaisical attitudes and approaches toward God are rife throughout the Western church. There is little to no sustained, prolonged, and focused times of prayer and fasting among both individuals and groups of people because we are too busy indulging in revelry with our idols of money, sex, power, and perfectionist control. Until we are cut to the heart with this present darkness of empty souls and vacuous spirits which run to everything and everyone but God, there will be no entering the Promised Land of peace, love, and joy in the Holy Spirit. The glory of the Lord is almost upon us, and the season of Lent is nearly here. So, let us make a solid spiritual plan for the forty days leading up to Easter for prayer and fasting on behalf of our own sin, and the sin of the world.
Holy God, idolatrous sin brings about your wrath because you cannot stand for the lack of love to take root in your world. I bow before you and bend the knee to your sovereign reign in my life. Please lead me in your way of righteousness, and have mercy on those trapped in darkness so that we might see you, through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. Amen.