“You shall have no other gods before me.” Exodus 20:3 ESV
What makes something an idol? Why is an idol so destructive in your life? Or is God simply on an ego trip?
Setting aside any religious understanding you may have on idols, let’s look at it from a practical point of view.
What was the first idol that appeared on the world scene? Would you believe it involved an archangel. The Bible states that God created Lucifer more beautiful than any other angel. However, rather than show gratitude to God and walk humbly with Him, Lucifer began to look at himself. He basically began to look at himself as superior to God. His pride turned himself into an idol. The result was a failed coup of heaven and banishment from authority within God’s domain.
What was Adam’s and Eve’s sin? Didn’t Eve make the forbidden fruit an idol? Rather than spend more time with God or Adam in developing their relationship, her focus became the fruit. Upon the Serpent’s temptation, she allowed the idol to supplant her relationship with The Lord. Like Satan before her, she wasn’t satisfied in keeping the relationship between her and The Lord in place. She was created to be like God, but limited in her physical attributes. She wanted more. She wanted to be more like God and took circumstances into her own hands to make it happen. She wasn’t going to wait for God to bring it about in his way and schedule. Her idol became her Achilles heel.
An idol is simply anything that comes before God. Generally speaking, idols really don’t exist anywhere but in our hearts and mind. Whatever takes the place of God in our worship, love, and passion is a candidate to become an idol. Money, power, sex, food, friends, family, country, religion, science, are some of the candidates that we convert into idols. By themselves, they are usually neutral and generally very good for our well-being. However, whenever they become more important in our life than the Triune God, we have crossed over into idol worship.
The result of idol worship is generally a kick in the pants. Idols are false strongholds that empower us away from God and reality. God has designed a divine order in how life works. When we build our life outside of his order, holes and craters will appear. The result is usually pain and sorrow and maybe even premature death.
God created us. He made us to worship him. He designed us to walk with Jesus Christ. He encased us to have fellowship with the Holy Spirit. Like any healthy marriage relationship, a third-party (mistress) takes away the intimacy between the two. The same is true when an idol comes between our Heavenly God and ourselves.
You may not recognize the idols in your life. God does. He knows your spiritual condition. That is why I am most grateful for Jesus Christ. His act of justification on our behalf and the outpouring of his grace only demonstrates his awesome love for us. I for one am thankful that he cares enough for us that he takes the time to help destroy the idols in our lives. We may not like the process, but the fruit at the end of the day is most scrumptious.
Rooting For You in Christ!
Executive Chair, Consultant, Encourager
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
* Great Business Emulates a Good God
* Be Radical…Follow Christ!
* Simply The Messenger
* Unequally Married