Have you ever felt like the Bible is too restrictive or has too many rules? A lot of people feel this way, much like we do when our parents set out rules for us. However, just like our parents were demonstrating their love for us, the prohibitions that God places on us are for our own good. God isn’t trying to keep anything good from us. Rather, He is trying to protect us from our own worst enemy–ourselves. This is what we see in our text for today, Exodus 34:15-16 which says, “Lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they play the harlot with their gods, and make sacrifice to their gods, and one of them invites you and you eat of his sacrifice, and you take of his daughters for your sons, and his daughters play the harlot with their gods, and make your sons play the harlot with their gods.”
Moses is back on Mt. Sinai after throwing down the first set of tablets and breaking them. Moses is going to spend another 40 days on Mt. Sinai meeting and hearing from God. In our text, God is giving specific prohibitions on the types of relationships that the children of Israel were to have. God was telling Israel not to marry outside of their people. This was because, Israel was God’s chosen people. They were the only nation who knew God and had a relationship with Him. God knew that if Israel had relationships, especially marriages, with the other people groups in the Promised Land, they would pull the Israelites’ hearts away from God. This translates today into who a Christian should date and marry. The same principle applies, a Christian should only date and/or marry another Christian. I have seen it far too often, when a Christian starts to date or even marry a non-Christian with the belief that he/she will influence the other for Christ. The end result is the Christian’s commitment to Jesus suffers, and in many instances the Christian begins to live a life that doesn’t demonstrate Jesus at all.
While the Bible may seem like a long set of rules that are meant to restrict our fun, we must reject that notion. God is not against His children having fun and enjoying life. Instead, God is trying to give us guardrails so that we don’t drive our life off a cliff. We always believe that we are able to be the exception, believing that we can be the one who can resist the temptation. However, most of the time we simply become another statistic. God loves you and has the best desires and plan for you. You just have to trust Him. When you do, I promise, what you will gain will far outweigh anything that you think you may have lost.
By His grace and for His glory,