Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Worthless as a Half-baked Cake

Reading through the prophetic books of the Old Testament can be very eye opening.  How many times have we heard the saying, “The past always repeats itself,” and shook our heads in agreement, but not learned from it?  The Bible provides the perfect opportunity to learn from the mistakes of the past.  The book of Hosea is no exception.  In this book, God speaks through His prophet, Hosea, to warn Israel of their coming punishment.  Hosea describes how the Israelites abandoned God’s ways and worshiped other gods despite Jehovah’s constant attempts to rebuke them.  Today I am struck by these words: 

“Its people (Israel) don’t realize I am watching them.  Their sinful deeds are all around them.  I see them all!  The people make the king glad with their wickedness.  The princes laugh about the people’s many lies.  They are all adulterers, … and no one cries out for help.  My people of Israel mingle with godless foreigners, picking up their evil ways.  Now they have become as worthless as a half-baked cake!” (Hosea 7:2-3,7-8, NLT)

There is a lesson to be learned here.  America has become a godless nation.  I don’t think that statement is going to shock anyone.  God and prayer have been banned from our schools.  Adultery, deception and lawlessness is so rampant that you cannot watch the evening news without seeing evidence of it.  Even many of our leaders are being found guilty of improper behavior; yet, we all shrug our shoulders saying, “who doesn’t do that now a days?”  We must not forget that God sees everything.  More importantly, we must be careful of how we respond to our cultural surroundings. 

I want to take a lesson from the book of Hosea.  I want to be sure that I am not “mingling” with those who do evil so as to “pick up their evil ways.”  I don’t want to be “as worthless as a half-baked cake!”  Does that mean that I am supposed to go and live in a commune somewhere away from all of civilization?  No.  That is not what God called anyone to do!  Christ commissioned us in Matthew 28 to go and make disciples.  You cannot do that if you are not in the world. 

So how can we “mingle with (the) godless” and NOT “pick up their evil ways?” 

Leave a comment.  I'd love to hear your thoughts! 


  1. "Godless" does _NOT_ mean "evil".

  2. That's true, and I wouldn't call them, or you, "evil".
    I am just as capable of "evil ways", myself.
    However, people who do not believe in God, like yourself, answer only to themselves and their own concept of what is right.

    Godless people are not led by the Spirit, but by the flesh and are going to be more likely follow evil ways such as those listed in Galatians 5:19-21.
    "The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like."

    But, (vs. 24) "Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires."

    That is the difference. Godly people tend to build each other up; and, though they are capable of evil ways, they recognize they are called to a higher standard: to be like Christ.

  3. Real-world numbers show that godless people are *NOT* more likely than believers to follow those evil ways.

    It's actually the other way around.

  4. Which proves my point about history repeating itself. Too many have allowed the culture to influence them to the point that oft times you can't tell the difference.

    This is not how it has always been, nor how it is supposed to be.

  5. On the other hand, Rick, those statistics are not differenciating those who "walk by the Spirit" and those who don't, but still claim Christianity.