Lenten Day 4: MAKING AND WORSHIPING OF IDOLS
MAKING AND WORSHIPING OF IDOLS
IDOL DEFINITION; an image or a representation of a god used as an object of worship. To completely understand this concept, we need to also define worship.
WORSHIP; the feeling or expression of reverence and adoration for a deity.
MAKE/MAKING; to bring or bringing into existence by shaping or changing material, combining parts.
THE CONCEPT OF IDOLATRY
The making and worshiping of idol is what is known as idolatry. Now in the ancient times and even up until now, mankind has been in search of a superior power responsible for the inexplicable happenings or existence. After every strange event, they accord it to a deity. An example of this happening is Barnabas and Paul at Lystra when Paul spoke to a crippled man and he jumped up on his feet, wholly healed. The people immediately tried to worship them but they refused vehemently.
But in this present day, people worship all kinds of things ranging from inanimate objects to human heroes and even spirit entities. Worship is the highest form of honour or respect. It is the respect one gives to an enigma or a deity.
Any form of honour or love and contests with our love for the Almighty God, constitutes idolatry. God had demanded unwavering love from the Israelites because He is their God. He therefore warned them about loving anything more than Him.
That instruction still stands today. If we get so sentimentally attached to anything created to the point it contests with our love for God, we venture into idolatry. It is exactly the same as bowing before physical idols.
Another concept is the issue of any spirit that demands obeisance from us that is not the Spirit of Christ. Plenty would-be prophets have fallen into this error. When they are devoid of the purifying Word of God and practice growing their spiritual gift. Eventually they fall into the wiles of these demonic entities who masquerade as the Holy Spirit and demand worship from them. The devil did same with Jesus at the beginning of his ministry. But Jesus unlike these strange prophets and men of God, answered the devil with the Word of God and so overcame the devil’s deception.
PROCESS OF MAKING OF IDOLS
The issue of modern day idolatry always starts with one’s love for anything created. A dress, a game show, a kind of food, a pet, a kind of look, anything at all that has the power to catch one’s attention deeply. Then it moves to one’s ignorance of the saving power of Christ and His supremacy.
This is the point. When one is ignorant of who Jesus Christ is and what he came to do, he will eventually seek answers at the hand of science or the supernatural.
Even for those who profess Christianity, making of idols is not so distant. It starts with our absence from the place of study of the Word of God. Then it moves to the coldness of our personal fellowship time with the Holy Spirit. Then maybe, acquisition of this world’s wealth which helps us to always seek help first from our money or all that our money or strength can accomplish. The more successful we get with our quests, the further we sink into tendencies to worship any form of idol. Most frequently, it has been money.
GODS COMMAND AND INHERENT WARNING
In our text, God commanded the Israelites never to worship other gods. God still warns us today. The truth remains that man, on his own, cannot manage his life right such that he arrives where God designed him to be. The reason is Adams sin. The original sin brought mankind under the control of the enemy our soul-the devil. The devil intends that no man arrive heavens portals. He seeks to destroy all men by deceiving them out of God’s love and bringing them into his total grip by causing them to worship other things other than God knowingly or unknowingly.
So, God places a love demand on mankind. First of all, God proves the depth of His love for us by sending Jesus to die for us. Then he makes the offer that we worship Him alone. Only the one who really loves you would make sacrifices for you. John 15:13 tells us of the greatness of God’s love for us by the sacrifice he made. Jesus death and resurrection saved us from the devil’s grip.
So, God commands us to hand our lives into His loving care by worshiping Him and Him alone. No wonder Psalm 91 starts by saying ‘if you dwell in the secret place of the Most High…’. This secret place is the presence of God produced by our act of worship. This is the assurance of ultimate protection from all kinds of evil. To remain there is the assurance of heaven.
To worship other gods or idols is to reject the offer of the Most High and to return to slavery at the hand of strange spirit-beings who themselves are cursed entities bound inevitably for hell and the Lake of fire!