A Clay Jar

Encouraging, comforting, and urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and glory. (1 Thess. 2:12 NIV)

Giving Lip Service

Psalm 78:35-37

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They remembered that God was their Rock,
that God Most High was their Redeemer.
But then they would flatter him with their mouths,
lying to him with their tongues;
their hearts were not loyal to him,
they were not faithful to his covenant.

Psalm 78:35-37 NIV

This psalm chronicles some of Israel’s early history from the Exodus to the time of David. During this time, God worked wonders in delivering Israel from Egypt and other enemies. The people would be faithful for a while and then rebel. God would punish them for their rebellion, they would cry out to God, and he would deliver them. Over and over again.

This passage reflects the heart of Israel during this time. When God delivered them, they would remember and honor him for a while. But their devotion to God was only skin deep. They went through the motions of worship, praising God with their lips. But it was only lip service, their hearts were not his. Their words of worship were a sham.

This condition was not unique to ancient Israel. What the psalmist says here is just as relevant to today’s church. All too often, we are guilty of offering lip service to God while our hearts are far from him. We gather together, sing songs of praise, listen to a sermon or Bible study, and go away unchanged. We only get serious about God during times of trouble. But when life is good, our hearts belong to this world.

As this psalm goes on to say, despite the shallowness of our faith, God is merciful and does not destroy us. But how much better it would be if we remembered and honored God in all we did—faithfully serving him as our Lord and God. And, in the end, to hear him say, “Well done, good and faithful servant! Come and share your Master’s happiness” (Matt. 25:21).

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Ed Jarrett

Just an old clay jar that God continues to see fit to use in his kingdom's work. I am retired, married with 2 children, and 4 grandchildren. I have followed Jesus for many years. And I love to share what He has given me from His word.

A Note to Readers

The views expressed here are solely mine and do not necessarily reflect those of any other person, group, or organization. While I believe they reflect the teachings of the Bible, I am a fallible human and subject to misunderstanding. Please feel free to leave any comments or questions about this post in the comments section below. I am always interested in your feedback.

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