Devastation

1 Samuel 5-6

“Then they carried the ark into Dagon’s temple and set it beside Dagon… The LORD’S hand was heavy upon the people of Ashdod and its vicinity; he brought devastation upon them and afflicted them with tumors.”                                                                                                             1 Samuel 5:2, 6

The ark of God was captured by the Philistines. The elders of Israel had called for it to be brought from Shiloh and the sons of Eli came along. The ark of God was captured, and the sons of Eli were killed. When Eli was told, he died as well, and the declaration was made that the glory had departed from Israel. But God is not handled by human hands like other gods are. God is sovereign even over the movement of the ark. The ark is not brought to Ashod by chance. The ark is not placed in the temple of Dagon by chance. God reveals that he will not be mocked. God is not like other gods to be used as a magic genie. God is the majestic ruler over all there is. He is to be adored above all others. Mocking God brings consequences—in this case tumors and devastation. God is not to be mocked, yet so many do. They discount who he is and they discount his ultimate authority. They cling to worthless things and then blame God when those worthless things tumble and fall and break before him in the same way the statue of Dagon did. I must be very careful to worship the Lord alone and not mock him by setting him amidst all the other mundane pursuits of my life. He must be given preeminence.

Dear Lord, forgive me for the times that I have mocked you and thought that I could control you. Help me always to worship you alone. Amen.