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  • Writer's pictureAlan Fong

The Living God

Today’s Verse:

And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again. And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the LORD; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him. ~1 Samuel 5:3-4


We live in a very pagan generation that has an irreverence of and disrespect for God. This generation refuses to accept God in His creation, in His authority, and in His glory. God is deserving of all of our glory. He is the Living God. This morning, I want us to consider some lessons about God taken from 1 Samuel 5, when the Philistines took the ark of God back to their cities and attempted to put it alongside of their idol god named Dagon.

God is not to be despised.

The despising of God can include blasphemies, taking the name of God in vain, using profanities, and being irreverent towards Him. Despising God is when there is spitefulness to His authority, His commandments, and His presence. The Philistines thought that they had made a huge conquest in “kidnapping” the ark of God and taking it back to their land. There was disrespect for God in worship and position. They made God like unto the vain imaginations of their heart. Romans 1:22 says of despisers of God, “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.” Be careful that you are not someone who is spiteful of God.

God cannot be dethroned.

The Philistines placed the ark of God next to their fish-man deity named Dagon. They presumed that the symbol of a holy and righteous God was equal to a pagan idol. The next day, Dagon was fallen on its face before the ark of God. They picked Dagon up and set him in his place again. The morning after that, they found Dagon with his head and hands cut off. There was only a stump of Dagon left. What a fearful reminder that God cannot be dethroned! He is not one of many gods to worship. God bows to no one! God is on His throne and reigns from on high. God is mighty, powerful, and all-glorious. He is not old, obsolete, or outdated. He is God of gods and Lord of lords. God must be first place in every heart.

God cannot be denied.

After these incidents with Dagon, the people of Ashdod, Ekron, and Gath were horribly afflicted with a terrible disease. It was a painful disease and many were destroyed. We are told that the hand of the Lord was heavy upon them. When people do not get the message regarding God’s authority and glory, they bring God’s judgment upon their health, their holdings, and their heirs. When a person does not bow to God voluntarily, God will bring him down in a way that is humiliating, hurtful, and sometimes horrible.

The Bible says that “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” To have the hand of the Lord heavy against someone because God has been denied, dethroned, or despised only serves to show how dark, pagan, and disrespectful one is. God alone is the King Who is eternal, immortal, invisible, and the only wise God. He is God alone and there is no other. "God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth."

God does not change for us. We must change for God. We must realize that He is always the One in control and Who has the final say in all matters. Give God the glory this morning!

Have a worshipful God Morning!

Bible Reading Schedule: Jeremiah 14-17

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