The influence of the other nations in Canaan was probably the biggest factor that drew Israel from God to Baal. One of the reasons Baal was so popular with the other nations was, according to the research of Immanuel Velikovsky, there were great astronomical events that happened in the heavens at that time. These events were attributed to Baal by the other nations in Canaan, and I suspect they had an influence on Israel. More than that, the belief in Baal goes a long way back and God warned the Israelites about it before they even crossed the Jordan: Exodus 34:16 (KJV) “And thou take of their daughters unto thy sons, and their daughters go a whoring after their gods, and make thy sons go a whoring after their gods.” What that passage is talking about is something that God saved Judah from a long time before that. Genesis 38:15 (KJV) “When Judah saw her, he thought her [to be] an harlot; because she had covered her face.” Judah thought Tamar was a temple prostitute. In those days temples of Baal would have young women priestesses that prostituted themselves at the temple. It was believed that having intercourse with a temple prostitute would cause Baal to bless your harvest. Judah was on his way to “sheer his sheep”. Perhaps he figured sleeping with a temple prostitute could help him get a larger return from his flock. But God saved him from that fate and at the same time continued the line of Jesus Christ, as Tamar is one of the 4 women mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus. The moral  that applies to all of our lives is that the people you choose to hang out with have a great influence in your life. If you surround yourself with people that uphold Christ, it will reinforce you faith. But if you keep people in your life that do not worship God, it will diminish your faith.

Categories: BlogTheology