I’ve decided to take some time out of my Saturday mornings/Friday nights to write up a short blog post on something that sticks out to me from the Torah portion that week.
This week, the potion is Va’etchanan, Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11. These chapters are FULL of amazing truths and promises as well as guidelines for a righteous life. But the part I really loved was 4:32-35:
“For ask now of the days that are past, which were before you, since the day that God created man on the earth, and ask from one end of heaven to the other, whether such a great thing as this has ever happened or was ever heard of. Did any people ever hear the voice of a god speaking out of the midst of the fire, as you have heard, and still live? Or has any god ever attempted to go and take a nation for himself from the midst of another nation, by trials, by signs, by wonders, and by war, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and by great deeds of terror, all of which the Lord your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes? To you it was shown, that you might know that the Lord is God; there is no other besides him.”
In a world overrun with polytheistic religions, this one god, Yahweh, emerged, taking for himself the slaves of a powerful nation. He showed his power through the signs and wonders (the 10 Plagues on Egypt) and freed this nation from captivity. He claimed this small nation that had nothing unique or special to their name and made them his treasured possession. Unlike the gods of Egypt or Babylon or Assyria, this god was one and this god could not be fashioned by human hands. He didn’t resemble animals or anything on Earth — no, he created all that we see.
When he spoke from Mt. Sinai, the nation of Israel was terrified and told Moses to act as their intercessor. They knew they would die if they saw him face to face. Instead of asking for human sacrifices as the gods of their time did (Baal, Molek), he asked the Israelites to live for him. Instead of being worshiped through small, man-made idols, he had the Israelites build a temple that mirrors the true temple in heaven.
I worship the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. These other gods are cheap imitations — at best man-made images, at worst demons parading as powerful creatures. But my god is God, the creator of the world and the provider of life. By choosing the Israelites, a small, unimportant people, I think he was showing his own power. He can work through even a small Canaanite tribe, he can bring them from slaves in Egypt to a mighty nation. He can also bring those who weren’t born to the nation of Israel into his family and into the covenant he made at Mt. Sinai (Ephesians 2:11-13, John 10:16).
These other awesome verses also attest to the same truth:
“There is none like you, O Yahweh; you are great, and your name is great in might.” ~Jeremiah 10:6
“There is none like you, O Yahweh, and there is no God besides you, according to all that we have heard with our ears.” ~1 Chronicles 17:20
“There is none holy like Yahweh; there is none besides you; there is no rock like our God.” ~1 Samuel 2:2
“There is none like God, O Jeshurun, who rides through the heavens to your help, through the skies in his majesty.” ~Deuteronomy 33:26
And here’s a great song, “No One Like You” by David Crowder Band (the video’s a bit cheesy, but the song is awesome!):