Hunkered Down Devotion

Galatians 4:8-9 (Voice)
8 During the time before you knew God, you were slaves to powers that are not gods at all. 9 But now, when you are just beginning to know the one True God—actually, He is showing how completely He knows you—how can you turn back to weak and worthless idols made by men, icons of these spiritual powers? Haven’t you endured enough bondage to these breathless idols?

In these few short verses Paul acknowledges and calls out some  important realities for us all to recognize in the difference between our lives before we knew Jesus and the lives we lead after having encountered him.  Before we knew God, we were beholden to all sorts of lesser gods and powers that held us captive and ruled over us.  

These idols were worthless and not even worthy of comparison to God.  More than that, these idols and powers were not benevolent rulers over our lives, but they were vicious overlords that enslaved us not for our benefit but for their own purposes, never satisfied, always wanting more.  

Paul’s point is that is that Jesus, the son of the true God is nothing like these false gods and manmade idols that don’t know of care anything about you and have only their own interests in mind.  While we are just learning about God – and will always have more that we can learn – God already knows all about us.  Jesus knows us and loves us inside and out.  Jesus not only knows all about us, he genuinely wants only what is best for us.  

So while, Jesus will certainly have expectations for us and on us, they aren’t for his benefit – they are for ours.  Those expectations and responsibilities are to bring out the best in who we are and who we were created to be.  They are so that we can live free of the bonds of servitude that we knew when we were under the thumb of the idols that enslaved us.  

Paul further cautions the Galatian Christians, and all of us, now that we know Jesus, not to fall back into those old patterns of slavery to the lesser, false idols were served in the past.  The don’t know us at all.  The don’t care for us at all.  They can’t do anything for us at all.  God knows us.  God loves us.  God wants what is best for us.  

Sharing God’s Love

Prayer:  Lord, help us to trust in and serve you, the one true God who knows us, loves us, and cares for us.  Amen.

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