Monday, March 09, 2009

Time to Check My Idols

I have had a lot of help in all the notes and quotes below

John Calvin : “our hearts are a perpetual factory of idols”.

Psalm 115
4 Their idols are silver and gold,
the work of human hands.
5 They have mouths, but do not speak;
eyes, but do not see.
6 They have ears, but do not hear;
noses, but do not smell.
7 They have hands, but do not feel;
feet, but do not walk;
and they do not make a sound in their throat.
8 Those who make them become like them;
so do all who trust in them.

‘Sensory Organ Malfunction Imagery’ is the Biblical language for idolatry. We become callous and hardened toward God because we are worshiping other things. As a result, we grow less sensitive to our God and His ways. He is foreign to us and He begins to fade. We do not hear Him, we do not see Him, and we do not speak of Him. When we do think of Him, it is often as an expedient. We feel the need to tag Him as a superstitious ritual in solving a mess. But there is no sense of His Lordship and no heart desire to seek Him.
Sadly, culture has taught us how to live without God. In our media-model culture, God is seldom referred to as a part of everyday life.
In stark contrast to men and women of the Scriptures, we sense only weakly the presence of the Creator. The saints of old had a daily awareness, but we are so immersed into the media view of world that we compartmentalize Him and allow Him to speak only on Sundays or in a Bible Study. We live with little or no sensitivity to God working in our life.
I like watching the TV show “24”, but there has never been one reference of a spiritual nature in the many seasons of that show. Entire ‘days’ of death and drama take place with no perception of the afterlife, no foundation for morals, no prayer, no Bible, no real hope. Where is spirituality? It is becoming more unnatural to see an active God in the moment-by-moment details of life. We definitely don’t talk that way. It has been said that worldliness is what any culture does to make sin seem normal and righteousness seem strange. We go into life as blind as the idol makers of Isaiah’s day. The gods we serve are empty of power and we curse the heavens because God won’t show Himself. Who moved?

G.K. Beale

“At the core, idolatry is trying to control life and manage life by trying to make God controllable: if you can get God to do what you want by getting his attention or through some sacrificial service, then perhaps life will turn out the way you want it to. This is one of the root beliefs of pagan religion. It is telling to ask how much pagan religion is still in the confines of the church.” Bill Delvaux


"We are more spiritual than we even know.”

“I ordinarily begin speaking about sin to a young, urban, non-Christian like this:
Sin isn’t only doing bad things, it is more fundamentally making good things into ultimate things. Sin is building your life and meaning on anything, even a very good thing, more than on God. Whatever we build our life on will drive us and enslave us. Sin is primarily idolatry.” Tim Keller

As we list modern day idols, simple state what are the ‘good things
that we have made into ‘god things”?

Questions to Help Us Identify Idols:
Most afraid of? What are you afraid of losing?
Long for most passionately?
Where do you go for comfort?
What media-advertisements pull your heart strings?
What do you complain about the most?
What angers you the most?
What makes you happiest?
How do you explain yourself to other people?
What has made you be angry at God?
What do you brag about?
What do you want to have? What one thing?
What do you sacrifice the most for?
Whose approval matters?
What comfort do you treasure?

My idol is ….. too many to mention. Lord, I need you to bust up some idols in my life. I feel very distant from You. Thank you for forgiving me. Let's get to work!

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