I realize idolatry is in the world. However, I never really thought about idolatry being so prominent in my small neck of the woods. Afterall, I live in the “Bible belt”…we don’t worship idols around here! Now it seems everywhere I look I see idolatry alive and well right here in small town America. I am even tempted with idolatry at times. Are you? NOOOOOO, you say?
Please allow me to expound on the definition of idolatry according to the Word of God in 1 Samuel 15:23 “For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you from being king.” Yes, stubbornness is as idolatry. Ouch, huh? That’s what I thought when I read that scripture. While we’re still bleeding, let me go ahead and throw this salt on the wound. The Word of God also says in Galations 5:19-21 “Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery,fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, IDOLATRY, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
I don’t know about you but idolatry was always something I just kind of skimmed over. Merriam Webster defines idolatry as “the worship of a physical object as a god”. I just thought for sure I had the sin of idolatry conquered. I’m not worshipping a “physical object”! However, stubbornness and self will, well I have to lay that down at the altar every morning.
How many times a day do we try to take control of a situation when we feel God isn’t acting quick enough? Instead of seeking God’s will and waiting, we give Him an ultimatum. We will give Him a time limit. If You want to “show out”, here is your chance God; if not I will handle it….AGAIN. Maybe, just maybe, You (God) will show up for me too oneday. In the meantime, I’m going to walk around with my bottom lip stuck out because I’m so mistreated.
Does any of this sound familiar to anyone else? It may not be you but maybe someone you know who is constantly going through this form of idolatry; this stubbornness or self will. All we know is our “natural” and scared to have faith in God and His “supernatural”. Idolatry is putting our thoughts, ideas and ways above God’s. If we truly feel God has put us somewhere, rather it be a place or a situation, rather it be good or bad, sit and stay until God tells you to move. We cannot blame God for not helping us when we won’t listen. If the Lord never did another thing for us, He’s already done more than enough.
God is so full of grace, mercy and love. He doesn’t want to send me or anyone else to hell for being idolatrous. The Lord wants all of us to realize we must trust Him to be God in our lives. He’s not the 2nd choice when ours didn’t work out according to plan. I praise Him for being so faithful though. Even when He was 3rd, 4th or 5th choice in my life, He loves me enough to forgive me of my iniquities once I came to repentance. The Lord loves me enough to show me, teach me, guide and direct me if I will slow down enough to listen.
Idolatry isn’t just an Old Testament sin. It is in full tilt right here in small town America. Idolatry is in our churches and in our home. We all need to be aware of God’s definition of idolatry, not only Merriam Webster’s definition. If I lived by Merriam Webster’s definition I would be in dangerous territory. Stay close to God and stay in His Word and “Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.” 1 Corinthians 10:14. – Donna Warren