If you’re looking for entertainment, don’t go to our churches. Go to those “Christian Fellowship” churches all over the map. But for REAL entertainment, go to Mall of Asia or Araneta Coliseum.
Because of the sins of the Israelites, foremost of which is idolatry, “The LORD was very angry with Israel and removed them out of his sight” (2 Kgs 17:18). So after the Assyrians conquered Samaria, the LORD gave them what they always craved: a multitude of pagan idol-gods. The Assyrians exiled the Israelites into different parts of the empire, and in turn, people from Babylon, Syria, and other pagan lands were resettled in Samaria. These nations brought their idols along to Israel’s night life.
In 2 Kings 17:24-41, the Israelites then intermarried with these peoples and so also worshipped their gods, and in verse 29, they were first called the derogatory name Samaritans. The Samaritans “feared the Lord but also served their own gods” (verse 33). But to the writer of 2 Kings, in reality, they did not fear or worship the Lord, “They do not fear the Lord, and they do not follow… the commandment [of] the Lord” (verse 34). Their worship of the Lord was not genuine.
So they feared the LORD but also served their own gods, after the manner of the nations from among whom they had been carried away.
To this day they do according to the former manner. They do not fear the LORD, and they do not follow the statutes or the rules or the law or the commandment that the LORD commanded the children of Jacob, whom he named Israel. The LORD made a covenant with them and commanded them, “You shall not fear other gods or bow yourselves to them or serve them or sacrifice to them, but you shall fear the LORD, who brought you out of the land of Egypt with great power and with an outstretched arm. You shall bow yourselves to him, and to him you shall sacrifice. And the statutes and the rules and the law and the commandment that he wrote for you, you shall always be careful to do. You shall not fear other gods, and you shall not forget the covenant that I have made with you. You shall not fear other gods, but you shall fear the LORD your God, and he will deliver you out of the hand of all your enemies.” However, they would not listen, but they did according to their former manner.
Like these Israelites, most evangelical churches have married into the world of entertainment. And this is the stark result, as we have seen over the last several decades of Entertainment Sunday:
So these nations feared the LORD and also served their carved images. Their children did likewise, and their children’s children—as their fathers did, so they do to this day (2 Kings 17:33-41).