The British public service announcement was banned from U.S. airwaves because it was deemed too shocking. Yet, it spread like wildfire across the Internet. If you don’t remember it or haven’t seen it, you can watch the video above.
Five teenage girls are driving down the road, talking about boyfriends and school. The driver of the car is texting a friend on her cell phone when she veers across the road and hits another car head-on and then is hit from the side by another car.
Despite wearing their seat belts, the driver is killed while her friend sits beside her, horrified that her friend is dead.
The graphic video proves why texting and driving don’t mix. But the underlying problem affects not only our driving, but our relationship with God.
Please join us as we delve into this topic in our daily Bible conversation.
INSIGHTS AND EXPLANATIONS
Jeremiah 2:31-4:18. God addresses Israel from the perspective of a husband whose wife has been unfaithful. He asks Israel, “If a man divorces his wife and she leaves him and marries another man, should he return to her again?” (Jeremiah 3:1) He poses this question because the divorce law in Deuteronomy 24:1–4 prohibited a woman who had been divorced and who had married another man from ever returning to her first husband.
God then compares faithless Israel with unfaithful Judah. To their credit, Israel didn’t claim to follow God—they were faithless. But the people of Judah considered themselves followers of Yahweh, yet in their unfaithfulness they tried to hide their sin.
Colossians 1:1-17. Paul sent three letters from Rome with Tychicus and Onesimus: Colossians, Philemon, and Ephesians. While the church in Ephesus was pretty healthy, trouble was brewing in Colossae. A heretical teaching was going around that scholars to this day are trying to identify. The ESV Study Bible explains:
What likely happened at Colossae is that a shaman-like figure within the church had attracted a following and was presenting himself as something of a Christian spiritual guide (cf. “his sensuous mind,” Colossians 2:18). This person probably claimed to have superior insight into the spiritual realm and was advising the Colossian Christians to practice certain rites, taboos, and rituals as a means of protection from evil spirits and for deliverance from afflictions.
Resorting to these practices effectively denigrated the superiority of Christ. For this reason, Paul sought to expose the inferiority of placing our trust in rules and rituals and restoring their understanding of the predominance of Christ.
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THE WORD MADE FRESH
Even as a pastor, I must admit that I can spend an entire day ignoring God. I engage in conversations and plan upcoming meetings without recognizing God’s presence with me. He desires to be more than a part of my life, but all too often I resemble the actions of Judah, whom God laments, “My people have forgotten me, days without number” (Jeremiah 2:32).
Through the prophet Isaiah, God likens his relationship with Israel and Judah to the relationship between a husband and wife. This is an ongoing theme throughout Scripture, especially in Hosea.
In Jeremiah 3:1, he exposes their unfaithfulness: “You have lived as a prostitute with many lovers.” God’s bride prostituted herself to the many gods of her culture.
In the same way, we can prostitute ourselves to the many gods of our culture. Some of these gods are easy to identify. Immorality and indulgence are two that come to mind. But on further reflection, many gods we contend with today are very subtle. They present themselves in the form of entertainment, work, materialism, and busyness. The list is endless.
In their proper, biblical place, these “vices” aren’t inherently evil or wrong. It’s like texting and driving. Texting isn’t wrong, nor is driving a car. But put them together and they become tragic.
The problem lies in the distraction. When I’m driving my car and I get distracted by a text message, problems happen.
In the same way, I so easily allow my everyday life to distract me from my relationship with God. All too often, our pursuit of leisure or entertainment subtly distracts us from our most important relationship. God becomes a part of our life when he wants to be our life. The result can be tragic.
Please don’t text and drive. And please don’t allow your everyday life to distract you from your most important relationship.
- What spoke to you in today’s reading?
- Viewing your relationship with God from the perspective of a marriage relationship, how’s it going?
- What distracts people from their relationship with God?
- What distracts you from your relationship with God?
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Michael co-pastors The Neighborhood Church with Eugene Scott in Littleton, Colorado.