Hosea 10:1. “Israel is an empty vine, he bringeth forth fruit unto himself: according to the multitude of his fruit he hath increased the altars; according to the goodness of his land they have made goodly images.”

An Empty Vine

Again, I can’t help but make the comparison to America today. Israel had been made bountiful, a “land of milk and honey.” The soil was fertile; there was rain, and there was plenty. But Israel began to become self-indulgent in its wealth, and used it for their own comfort, forgetting the God Who provided it for them. They even went so far as to build altars to heathen gods and make offerings of God’s bounty to those gods.

So is America today. A land of plenty, the “breadbasket of the world,” has in many ways turned its back on the God Who has so richly blessed us. We take our comfort for granted. It’s cold today, nearly freezing, yet most of us are reasonably warm. We eat, we bundle up against the cold, we enjoy a warm bed at night. But how often do we stop to truly thank God, and to “remember Him for all His benefits”(Psalm 103:2)? Not enough!

We read the history of Israel, and we shake our self-righteous heads at their idolatry. We wonder how they could hear, and not listen; have eyes, but not see. Yet, here we are, having been so blessed in this nation, standing on the brink of terror and destruction that we have never faced before. Why? Because we are guilty of idolatry! We worship money, leisure, luxury, comfort, more food than we need, closets full of clothing we cannot begin to wear out, expensive cars and myriads of other toys that often sit unused once the novelty wears off. We have become idolators of wealth.

In that process, we have turned our backs, as a nation, on the God Whose hand has so richly blessed us.

There will be consequences.

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