Deuteronomy 32:21 They have moved me to jealousy with that which is not God; they have provoked me to anger with their vanities: and I will move them to jealousy with those which are not a people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation.
The Lord redeemed Israel out of Egypt for the purpose of worshipping Him. Instead of willingly serving Him, the nation of Israel turned to vanities. In doing so, they ignited the fire of God’s anger (Deuteronomy 32:21-22). Ultimately, God chose to provoke Israel to jealousy with a people “which are not a people” – the Gentiles. Since Israel had provoked the Lord to anger with their vanities, He was going to use Gentiles, whom Israel knew to be “not a people,” to provoke Israel to anger. The Lord expects the redeemed to flee vanity and give themselves wholly to His work, worship, and will. The Lord has now redeemed Jew and Gentile “for his name” (Acts 15:14), and He expects the same from each of us.
- (For children): God’s will for Uzziah was for him to be king. For the most part, he was a good king. But Uzziah provoked the Lord to anger when he stepped out of God’s will and thought he could do the work of the priests. Read what happened to him for his disobedience in 2 Chronicles 26:4, 16-21.
- (For everyone): The Lord redeemed us with the precious blood of His Son. How could it grieve Him when we seek after vanity and disregard His will for our lives?
- Vanity takes and gives nothing in return. The Lord is able to give far more in return than man could ever give to Him. For what are you giving yourself?
- Ask God to show you when you are provoking Him with vanity.
- Thank the Lord for His longsuffering.