Good morning, Marda Loop Church; welcome and happy Thanksgiving! Today we are continuing on with our series on the Ten Commandments, and this week, John is talking about the second commandment. In Exodus chapter 20, verses four and five we are told to make and hold no idols that would distract us from our one true God: “you shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God” (ESV). As we meet and worship today, I pray that we would be able reflect on our own lives and see more clearly the line between appreciating God’s creation and worshiping or serving it.
Seek First – Ben Smith & Jason Upton
You’re the Only One – Chris Renzema
“When my life was fainting away, I remembered the Lord, and my prayer came to you, into your holy temple. Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love. But I with the voice of thanksgiving will sacrifice to you; what I have vowed I will pay. Salvation belongs to the Lord!” (Jonah 2:7-9, ESV).
Sometimes, it feels as if giving up the things we idolize is a great sacrifice. “How could I ever give up _____” or “_____ is actually the best thing for me right now.” You can fill in the blank with whatever it is you have been putting ahead of God, be it a workout routine, a book, a person, a TV show; it is so easy to get swept away with the things we are passionate about, and sometimes these things are truly good: a new relationship or a workout routine can be a beautiful thing! As was the case for Jonah, we can even idolize our own plans and free will. Fortunately, God has forgiveness for us just as he had forgiveness for Jonah. As we think of all the things we are thankful for, let us remember that God is the one who supplied us with all of these gifts, and while we can be thankful for many things, we can worship only one God.
O Come to the Alter – Elevation Worship
Your Glory – All Sons & Daughters
If you have not already watched our most recent sermon (October 11th), we are taking communion as part of our worship this week. If you are able, I encourage you to listen to the sermon, partake in communion, and reflect on what it means to be in communion with God and with each other. As many of us will be coming together and sharing meals with our families and loved ones this weekend, let us remember that communion is the coming together of the body of Christ, so let us participate in this together.
Highlands (Song of Ascent) – Hillsong United
“So, my very dear friends, when you see people reducing God to something they can use or control, get out of their company as fast as you can. I assume I’m addressing believers now who are mature. Draw your own conclusions: When we drink the cup of blessing, aren’t we taking into ourselves the blood, the very life, of Christ? And isn’t it the same with the loaf of bread we break and eat? Don’t we take into ourselves the body, the very life, of Christ? Because there is one loaf, our many-ness becomes one-ness—Christ doesn’t become fragmented in us. Rather, we become unified in him. We don’t reduce Christ to what we are; he raises us to what he is. That’s basically what happened even in old Israel—those who ate the sacrifices offered on God’s altar entered into God’s action at the altar. Do you see the difference? Sacrifices offered to idols are offered to nothing, for what’s the idol but a nothing? Or worse than nothing, a minus, a demon! I don’t want you to become part of something that reduces you to less than yourself. And you can’t have it both ways, banqueting with the Master one day and slumming with demons the next. Besides, the Master won’t put up with it. He wants us—all or nothing. Do you think you can get off with anything less?” (1 Corinthians 10:14-22, MSG).
Thank you for joining us today! If you haven’t listened to this week’s sermon yet, it is posted on both our YouTube channel and our website, or you can find the link on our Facebook and Instagram pages. If you prefer to listen to worship music in a playlist format, we’ve got you covered there too! All of these songs are also available on our Spotify playlist so that you can worship as you go about your week. Our playlist is updated every week so that the songs for the most recent message will be right at the top of the queue. Thanks, and God bless!