Lord's Day 23

Week 22 :: Week 23 :: Week 24


The first commandment explicitly forbids worship and give glory to any other gods but the one true God. It was a necessary command, when you consider that while God was giving the commandments to Moses, Aaron and the rest of the Israelites were making themselves a golden calf, a false god to replace the God who had just delivered them. 

We are prone to worshiping false gods even today. If you need proof, look no further than the culture that produces American Idol, where the pop-star life is celebrated, and the stars themselves are idolized. We adore, emulate, study, and follow after these pop sensations – but aren’t these words that also describe the way we are supposed to live as Christians? 

We find our false god’s elsewhere too, usually within ourselves. We come up with misconceptions about God from a lack of honest study, or a refusal to deal with the harder truths of God. We create our false gods by imagining God to be what we want Him to be rather than what His word says He is. Consider the astonishing words of Oprah Winfrey, "God... is the essence of all consciousness... isn't something to believe. And God is a feeling experience, not a believing experience. And, in fact, if your religion is a believing experience... if God for you is still about a belief, then it's not truly God." This is the voice that influences millions of people every day! 

When we abandon the Biblical revelation of the truths of God for the things we want God to be, we have created God in our own image. We are prone to idolatry and the first commandment is a reminder of the necessity to know God has He is revealed in scripture and to give our worship and glory to God alone. May we be continually guided by the first commandment to know God and to worship Him alone! 


Almighty God, forgive us, for we have sought after false gods who are not really gods at all. Draw us back to you, that we may know you as you have shown yourself in your Word, and may worship you in spirit and in truth. In Jesus’ name. Amen. 

Question 47

Q. 47. What is forbidden in the first commandment?

A. The first commandment forbiddeth the denying, or not worshipping and glorifying, the true God as God, and our God; and the giving of that worship and glory to any other, which is due to him alone.

Scripture Proofs

Ps. 14:1;

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.”

They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds; there is none who does good.

Rom. 1:21;

For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

Ps. 81:10-11;

I am the Lord your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt.

Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it.

“But my people did not listen to my voice; Israel would not submit to me.

Rom. 1:25-26.

because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.

For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature;

Question 48

Q. 48. What are we specially taught by these words, before me,” in the first commandment?

A. These words, before me,” in the first commandment teach us, that God, who seeth all things, taketh notice of, and is much displeased with, the sin of having any other God.

Scripture Proofs

Ezek. 8:5-18;

Then he said to me, “Son of man, lift up your eyes now toward the north.” So I lifted up my eyes toward the north, and behold, north of the altar gate, in the entrance, was this image of jealousy. And he said to me, “Son of man, do you see what they are doing, the great abominations that the house of Israel are committing here, to drive me far from my sanctuary? But you will see still greater abominations.” 

And he brought me to the entrance of the court, and when I looked, behold, there was a hole in the wall. Then he said to me, “Son of man, dig in the wall.” So I dug in the wall, and behold, there was an entrance. And he said to me, “Go in, and see the vile abominations that they are committing here.” So I went in and saw. And there, engraved on the wall all around, was every form of creeping things and loathsome beasts, and all the idols of the house of Israel. And before them stood seventy men of the elders of the house of Israel, with Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan standing among them. Each had his censer in his hand, and the smoke of the cloud of incense went up. Then he said to me, “Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel are doing in the dark, each in his room of pictures? For they say, ‘The LORD does not see us, the LORD has forsaken the land.’ ” He said also to me, “You will see still greater abominations that they commit.” 

Then he brought me to the entrance of the north gate of the house of the LORD, and behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz. Then he said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? You will see still greater abominations than these.” 

And he brought me into the inner court of the house of the LORD. And behold, at the entrance of the temple of the LORD, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men, with their backs to the temple of the LORD, and their faces toward the east, worshiping the sun toward the east. Then he said to me, “Have you seen this, O son of man? Is it too light a thing for the house of Judah to commit the abominations that they commit here, that they should fill the land with violence and provoke me still further to anger? Behold, they put the branch to their nose. Therefore I will act in wrath. My eye will not spare, nor will I have pity. And though they cry in my ears with a loud voice, I will not hear them.”

Ps. 44:20-21.

 If we had forgotten the name of our God or spread out our hands to a foreign god, would not God discover this?

For he knows the secrets of the heart.