Cheating on God

Posted by Mark Lindley on 28 June 2017 | Comments

Marriage is a wonderful blessing given by God. God wants those who are married to treasure this blessing and stay together, keeping the commitment they have made. On their wedding day, a couple promises to be faithful to each other. However, “cheating” within marriage is fairly common, but, always wrong. Infidelity ruins relationships and devastates the person that one has vowed to love and cherish.

            There is another type of cheating that is common to our day—cheating on God. The Bible teaches that one may commit the sin of “spiritual adultery.” This occurs when a child of God puts some thing or someone in the place of God. The Lord is worthy of first place in the lives of his people. Choosing other “gods” of the world is to commit spiritual adultery.

            Perhaps, no book of the Bible emphasizes this more than the Old Testament book of Hosea. God instructed the prophet, Hosea, to go and take a wife who was given to whoredom: “The beginning of the word of the LORD by Hosea. And the LORD said to Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the LORD” (Hosea 1:2). The immoral woman Hosea married was a fitting representation of how Israel had “cheated” on God. Notice in the last part of the Lord’s statement to Hosea: “for the land hath committed a great whoredom, departing from the Lord.”

            But how had Israel been unfaithful to God? The answer is found in Hosea 4:17: “Ephraim is joined to idols: let him alone.” “Ephraim,” in this verse, stands for Israel. The problem was that Israel had turned from the true God to idols. Serving these false gods made Israel guilty of spiritual adultery, cheating on God.

            Spiritual adultery is very prevalent today. The true God who loves all is often ignored and rejected for things of the world. Money, recreation, earthly possessions, sensual pleasure, and selfish interests often take God’s place. There is no room for God, no time for being faithful to him. The Lord, who provides each breath, gives life, and every blessing must take second place!

            God was longsuffering and patient with Israel, but, in time, He “sent her away” (Jeremiah 3:8). God is still patient. However, we should learn from the unfaithful nation of Israel that spiritual adultery will not be tolerated forever!