“See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand.”

Deuteronomy 32:39
As Moses pronounced God’s judgment on His chosen people for their sure and certain disobedience, he realized that Israel would abandon Yahweh who is a rock, sure, steadfast, unmovable and unchangeable, one who can always be trusted. Israel would instead seek other gods which are not rocks or even sand. They are an illusion for they either do not exist or worse: they are demons. Yahweh is the only God. There are no other gods beside Him.

Despite this we humans often worship other things or even people as gods. We give them loyalty, time, energy and adoration but, in effect they possess no love or real power. I guess that is why God is so offended by them. He is a loving person. He is all powerful. What do we frail humans choose in His place? We choose things that cannot deliver us, cannot forgive us our sins, cannot love, cannot give us the real comfort we need in times of adversity and sorrow.

Therefore God feels betrayed. He is hurt but He does not cast us off. Instead He disciplines us to bring us to Him. Such discipline, though painful, is a necessary blessing. Often we think that blessings come when we are on the mountaintop of victory and joy when we feel God’s presence. Yet the real blessing comes when we are in the valley of darkness and despair. It is there that we reach out for God’s presence because we do not feel Him. That is where faith thrives and flourishes for the absence of feeling His presence does not mean He has left us. Faith imparted to us by God tells us that He is there even though our feelings say otherwise.