The Defeat of Israel by Assyria

Text: 2 Kings 17:1-18

Reflection and Question: In this analysis of the Assyrian defeat of Israel, the writers of Deuteronomy condemn worship practices that were common in ancient Israel. I remember vividly from seminary my Old Testament prof commenting that the people of Israel thought they were worshipping Yahweh, the God of Israel, when they prayed “under every green tree.” Like the ancients, we can think we are worshipping God in Christ when we are really worshipping some other god. What examples do you see of our worshipping idols, even as we think we are worshipping God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit?

Prayer: Most loving God, save us from the sin of Israel and from their hard punishment. Warn us when we stray into worshipping idols and false gods so that we may repent and change our ways. May we worship You in Spirit and in Truth. Amen.

This meditation is based on the Daily Lectionary Year 1 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).