Can’t Have It Both Ways
Reform your ways so that I may
Remain with you.
But here you are, putting your trust
in deceitful words to your own loss!
Are you to steal and murder, commit adultery and perjury
Burn incense to Baal....and yet come
To stand before me, in This House,
That bears my name
And say....”We are safe!” Jeremiah 7:11
Nope! God says we can’t have it both ways: Do evil and. eßxpect God not to notice. We can’t follow every word uttered in silky tones as the full truth and think that God agrees.
We cannot follow every teaching offered in technicolor because it is so beautifully presented that it must surely be true. You cannot worship at the altar of greed, sexual perversion, infidelity and believe you are worthy of God’s protection and assistance. If I have grievously offended a friend, I would not expect their continued affection and support. I have broken a bond that needs repair. If the bonds that bind us together have been ruptured then only repentance will open a path to reunion.
Jeremiah , speaking for God, as His prophet, looks at the people of God, outlining their sinful behavior and the foolish expectation that they are still safe because they are the”chosen people”. That is presumptuous pride.
What has changed since the days of Jeremiah! Politicians publicly flaunt God’s law and have and have the audacity to present themselves for Communion, the sacred Body and Blood of Christ Himself. They eat condemnation unto themselves. But judge not for many come forward to receive communion thought they have not been to confession in years. Some have willfully missed their Mass obligations with weak excuses; yet dare to receive Him. Others commit secret sins of pornography or sins of the flesh yet do not seek absolution before approaching the Lord. Some people are abusive with their words and/or deeds but do not repent the injury they have inflicted. Some come forward harboring anger and revenge in their hearts. God says, But here you are standing before my minister to receive a sacrilegious
communion. How dare you!
We pile up sins without much thought because it is acceptable in our culture. From biblical times God has spurned such empty worship because it is not true worship. The Bible is full of stories from the prophets telling His people that their sacrifices are unacceptable because their hearts are far from Him. Because we are all sinners we should approach the altar on our knees, striking our breast in repentance for the smallest sin; endeavoring to present ourselves as an unblemished soul, as much as that is possible.
If we would but come to Him with a contrite heart and unburden ourselves , he will fill us with peace and joy. Have you ever experienced deep peace, that surety of being loved no matter what you have done? Life is short and you know not the day nor the hour of the accounting for your life.