You shall rise before the gray headed and honor the presence of an old man, and fear your God: I am the Lord. (Leviticus 19:32, NKJV)
Growing old is natural. The old were once young, and the young will become old. These things are too self-evident to warrant comment. Today’s command from the Law of Moses trained Israel to have respect for the elderly. But more than that, showing respect toward the aged is described as growing out of one’s fear of God. He is “Lord” (YHWH, Jehovah), the eternally-existing one. Ultimately, we do not have power over the aging process, He does. Being disrespectful toward an older people reflects a fundamental failure to respect God , who gives life (both young and old). So, when you come upon an older person in the grocery store who can no longer push the shopping cart as quickly as you, don’t become frustrated. When the older person is driving slower than you think he should, be patient. The “old man” should not be discounted because of his age, any more than the strength of the youth should be discounted by the aged. There is a place in this world for both. “The glory of young men is their strength, and the splendor of old men is their gray head” (Proverbs 20:29). Whether young or old, we must fear God because He is timeless.
O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Your name in all the earth, who have set Your glory above the heavens! (Psalm 8:1, NKJV)
Yahweh (Jehovah) is the eternally-existing One, the great I AM (Exodus 3:14-15). He is Lord (sovereign) over heaven and earth, and so His name (His honor, authority and character) is renown in all the earth and above the heavens. Our concept of God, our attitudes toward God and our conduct toward God must reverence His supreme place of power and praise. Only then are we able to submit to Him fully, worship Him acceptability, and serve Him faithfully. Only then do we live by every word that comes from His mouth (Deuteronomy 8:3; Matthew 4:4). We are without excuse for being under His wrath when we choose to reject God and will not honor His majesty and respect His rule over us (Romans 1:18-20). We corrupt ourselves in unbelief if we spurn His majestic honor to serve gods after our own image (Romans 1:21-23). We must always recall that God, who reigns supreme, has crowned us with glory and honor (Psalm 8:3-8). We are not gods – He is the only God! He alone, by His great might, overwhelms silences every foe. How utterly disrespectful it is to disdain His name and refuse to live thankful, holy, and obedient lives. When we say we love God then our lives must show our love by obedient submission to His will and by faithful thanksgiving to Him for His abundant blessings.
5 Your calf is rejected, O Samaria! My anger is aroused against them— How long until they attain to innocence? 6 For from Israel is even this: A workman made it, and it is not God; But the calf of Samaria shall be broken to pieces. 7 They sow the wind, and reap the whirlwind. The stalk has no bud; It shall never produce meal. If it should produce, aliens would swallow it up. (Hosea 8:5–7, NKJV)
From the “excellent sacrifice” Abel offered God “by faith,” to the worship contained in the new covenant of Christ, God has always demanded reverent homage that obeys His revealed instructions concerning approved worship (Hebrews 11:4; John 4:23-24; Acts 20:7). It was a great sin when Jeroboam distorted Jehovah worship by building two golden calves for Samaria as an alternative to worshiping at the temple in Jerusalem (1 Kings 12:25-33). Even as Hosea prophesied, God was preparing to destroy the calf and the people who had flocked to it to worship. Israel sowed the wind of nothingness by honoring the graven image, and was about to reap the whirlwind of divine judgment. Whether an individual or a nation, beware when sin becomes the pattern and purpose of existence. The whirlwind of God’s destruction is not far behind. Only by repenting of sin and turning to God through His Son Jesus Christ will reaping the whirlwind be avoided (Acts 4:12; 26:20; Romans 2:1-6).
1 And in that day you will say: “O Lord, I will praise You; Though You were angry with me, Your anger is turned away, and You comfort me. 2 Behold, God is my salvation, I will trust and not be afraid; ‘For Yah, the Lord, is my strength and song; He also has become my salvation.’ ” 3 Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation. (Isaiah 12:1–3, NKJV)
In the day of God’s redemption of His remnant, gathered from the four corners of the earth, the redeemed shout a joy of praise and thanksgiving (Isa. 11:11-12). This prophetic description of Jehovah’s praise by the saved is now fulfilled in Christ and His gospel (Rom. 1:16). Thus, Christians sing praises to God for His salvation (Col. 3:16). Isaiah expresses the confidence of salvation we now enjoy in Christ; Thanks be to God for His great salvation! The water of life is offered to all who will come to Jesus and drink (Jno. 4:10; Matt. 11:28-30; Rev. 22:17). The gospel will save you today and refresh you with salvation’s blessings: “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (Acts 3:19; 2:38). Become a Christian and share in the joy of salvation.