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Thou Shalt Have No Other gods Before Me

Recently I was having a discussion with some people about other religions and other gods.  Their understanding was, that if you had a belief in God (as the creator of the world) and were religious then you were a Christian.  I explained to them that this notion was incorrect and that a Christian worships and follows Jesus Christ as their one and only true God and that He is their Lord and Saviour. I explained that the word Christian is derived from the name Jesus Christ and that Jesus is God in the flesh. In other words, if you are a Christian you are a Christ follower and you believe in the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as one. One of them also suggested that all religions are simply worshipping the same God (if they believe in a creator) and that we all just call our God different names. 

What does the Bible say about this and why should anyone believe the Bible?

The Bible is touted as being the inspired word of God which means if proven accurate God Himself is showing us how we identify the one true God and what happens when we worship other gods or have idols. As I started to research whether the authenticity of the Bible can be proven I learned that it is a book that was written over a period of at least 1,500 years by a number of authors. Although it is viewed as one book, it’s actually a collection of many books. God worked through everyday people, inspired by Him, to record what He wanted to say.  There is also physical evidence that the Bible is truth as there are copies of the manuscripts and throughout history these copies show that the Bible has been transmitted accurately. There are minor differences in manuscripts, called variants, but none of these variant’s impact or change key Christian beliefs or claims. Other physical evidence includes archaeological finds. The Archaeological Study Bible presents many notes and articles documenting how archaeology has again and again proven that the Bible does correspond to historical reality. The four Gospels – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – present an accurate record of the life and ministry of Jesus.  Jesus Himself then becomes an argument in support of the truth of the Bible. What does Jesus say about God’s Word? He says, “the Scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35).

I consider myself as one who has been so fortunate to have had the veil lifted from my eyes to have discovered the truth that Jesus Christ is God and is the one true God.  Many people view Jesus as someone important to God and a valuable figure but fail to realise that He is God Himself. Jesus is part of the Godhead which encompasses the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit and they (all three) are God in one. The Bible shows us Jesus existed in the beginning as the word and that the word was with God, and the word was God and that the word became flesh and dwelt amongst us. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made (John 1:1-3, NKJV).

He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth (John 1:10-14, NKJV).

For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. (1 John 5:7, NKJV). The Word of course is Jesus. 

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness (Genesis 1:26, NKJV). Note how God is referring to Himself in this Scripture as ‘us’ and ‘our’. This indicates there was more than one personal form of God from the beginning. The Bible also teaches that Jesus as God is the creator of Heaven and earth and existed before the creation of mankind. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.  For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.  And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.  And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence (Colossians 1:15-18, NKJV).

Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in My Father’s name, they bear witness of Me.  But you do not believe, because you are not of My sheep, as I said to you.  My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.  And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.  My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand.  I and My Father are one” (John 10:25-30, NKJV). The Bible is very clear and teaches that God is Jesus Christ and as God He exists as three distinct persons which are the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  They are not separate because to separate means to pull apart and also to be not joined.  To claim they are independent from one another is also incorrect as independent means free from the influence, guidance, or control of another or others. They are also not individual as individual means single, particular, separate. The three forms of God are three distinct persons in one but they are not separate. The word distinctive according to Meriam-Webster Dictionary means having a quality or characteristic that makes a person or thing different from others: different in a way that is easy to notice. The three forms of God are noticeably different, but they possess the same nature and personality.  Each form has a different role for us in our lives. God the Father formed us in our mothers’ wombs.  Jesus the Son died for our sins so we can be reconciled back to the Father and the Holy Spirit lives in us when we commit to Jesus as our Lord and Savior and leads and guides us into all truth. He is also our comforter.

One of the things that puzzles people as to Jesus being God is the confusion as to why He is referred to as the Son of God. How can He be both? And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God (Luke 1:35, NKJV). The angel Gabriel gives us the answer to that question. Mary gives birth to a son which was conceived in an immaculate conception by God through the Holy Spirit.  The word of God (who is God) in that moment became a human (the flesh of God) and a Son to Mary and God through the immaculate conception which is why He was referred to as God’s Son. Jesus as the Son of God (the physical human part of the trinity) didn’t exist as the flesh of God until that moment.

If you believe in God unfortunately knowing God only as the creator or even the Father of mankind is not enough for salvation. You have to believe in Jesus Christ for your salvation and make a commitment to Him as He was the one who died on the cross to take your sins and re-establish the relationship between you and Father God. This relationship between God (the Father) and mankind was severed when Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden.  It cannot be re-established without Jesus.  Many people in other religions (or even those who are into New Age) are claiming to have a relationship with God (or other gods and goddesses) and are even experiencing supernatural phenomenon, but without Jesus it could well be a demon that they are encountering.

 What does the Bible say about a relationship with God without Jesus? Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also (1 John 2:23, NKJV).

 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6, NKJV).  In this I am not saying that believing in God (without Jesus) is bad because this can become the catalyst to learning the truth. I first believed in God before I even understood or knew anything about Jesus and it was this that led me to my encounter with Jesus.

My belief in God the creator that I always had inspired me to one day ask a Christian who I knew had a personal relationship with God to ask, ‘how do I find God’?  They told me to ask Jesus into my heart, which I did everyday for a year before I went to sleep at night.  My prayer went like this, “Dear God if you are real, I repent for my sins and I ask Jesus into my heart.” This led to the life-changing encounter with Jesus Christ where I was one day sitting on my toilet at home and out of nowhere I was filled with the Holy Spirit of God and encompassed in the presence of God in a love that I cannot even describe.  He spoke to me in that moment (not audibly but into my mind) and told me that He was God, and that His word was the Holy Bible of God, and to read it and learn it.  He taught me about Himself and told me His Holy Spirit was in me and that He would teach me all I needed to know – which is exactly what has happened. I learned all about Jesus and how He died for my sins and that without Him I could not go to Heaven. Sin separates us from our spiritual Father God. Jesus (who is God) became flesh (a man) and died for us so that all who believe in Him can have everlasting life. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16, NKJV). It is actually very simple but the devil came in with his deception and made it confusing. There are today many religious practices that people are practising that do not include Jesus (as God) which means He is not their Lord and Savior.  Without this it is my belief (and is backed up by the Bible) that these ones are entrenched in deception and are not saved.  The Bible is clear that salvation (going to Heaven upon death) is achieved only through a relationship with Jesus. You cannot be reconciled back to God the Father without Him. Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also (1 John 2:23, NKJV).

I have also noticed how some Christians (true believers in Jesus) are mixing their Christian religion with other religions. Some religious practices including many traditions and cultures are rooted in worship or belief in other gods, goddesses or deities.   What does the Bible say about this? “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. “You shall have no other gods before Me. “You shall not make for yourself a carved image—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 nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments (Exodus 20:2-6, NKJV). When God tells us to not have any other gods before Him there are some who believe this means that as long as Jesus is at the top then that is okay.  The word ‘before Me’ does not mean a pyramid order, it means ‘in His presence’. Before Me in Hebrew is עַל (al) and means upon, over, on account of, above, to, against. In other words you should have no other gods in His presence. It is a metaphorical phrase.  How many times have you heard the statement – ‘I stand before you’. ‘Before you’ in this sense means ‘in your presence’. Further down in the Scripture this message is emphatically clear when it says you should not bow down to them nor serve them. It is my belief that when one still worships or follows traditions or customs rooted in the worship of other gods it can cause them to become cursed or inherit a demon. Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god; Their drink offerings of blood I will not offer, Nor take up their names on my lips (Psalm 16:4, NKJV). In this I am saying that a true Christian (who has Jesus as their Lord and Saviour) is saved but can still be afflicted in their flesh if they are still worshipping other gods, goddesses, idols etc.

Scripture also teaches us that ‘other gods’ are in actual fact demonic beings. What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered to idols is anything?  Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons.  You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord’s table and of the table of demons.  Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than He? (1 Corinthians 10:19-22, NKJV).  So many people do not know that many traditions and cultural practices which seem innocent are spiritual in nature and rooted in the worship and power of other gods (demons). 

It amazes me how the devil hides in secular things and blinds those whom he seeks to deceive.  Take the Maori culture in New Zealand for example.  Many Holy Spirit filled Christians are still practicing the Maori customs and religious practices which are rooted in worship to other gods.  Take for example the Hongi – the traditional Maori greeting.  It seems innocent. This practice however comes directly from the Maori gods, is spiritual and represents the exchanging of souls (breath). There are also many other religious practices, traditions and cultures around the world where blessings are done on lands, possessions, to people etc. in the name and power of other gods, goddesses, idols or deities.  If someone is invoking any other supernatural being other than the Father, Son and Holy Spirit to bless and that supernatural being is a demon then a blessing is not going to be what the recipient receives!

Scripture tells us we are to lay down our idols, customs, religious practices and traditions and worship God as Jesus, and worship only Him alone. He said to them, “All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition.  For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’ But you say, ‘If a man says to his father or mother, “Whatever profit you might have received from me is Corban”—’ (that is, a gift to God),  then you no longer let him do anything for his father or his mother,  making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down. And many such things you do.”  Every Christian in the world right now needs to pray for God to remove the veil and the scales from the eyes of the world so that they can ‘see’ the truth that Jesus is our one and only Lord and Saviour.  But not only this we need to pray also for God to show us (Christians) how we may be worshipping other gods, goddesses and idols through our everyday activities even though we follow Jesus Christ.

(PRAYER) – “Father God in Jesus name I repent for myself and ancestors for all worship to other gods, goddesses, idols, and deities. I confess these things are demons. If I have blessed someone or something in the name of other gods, goddesses, idols or deities I repent and break those unholy blessings in Jesus name. If I, my family, my land or any of my possessions have received a blessing in the name of other gods, goddesses, idols or deities I forgive those who have done this and break those unholy blessings in Jesus name. I confess that Jesus Christ is the one true God and I bless myself, my family, my land and possessions in His name. If there are any customs, traditions or practices I am involved in that is worshipping other gods please show me so I can repent and turn away from these things. I pray right now for the world, and I pray for Your truth to become apparent to them so that they can turn to Jesus and be saved.  I pray for the body of Christ and ask for You to remove the scales from their eyes, so that they can see the truth and turn from worshipping other gods and lay down these idols that may serve as blockages between You and them.  I break every ungodly soul tie between myself, other gods, goddesses, idols, deities and any person whom I came into agreement with while worshipping them. I command all demons, gods, idols, goddesses, and supernatural deities that are not of the Kingdom of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit to go in Jesus name, Amen.”

By Tania Francis

 

 

   

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