Today I had the privilege of listening to pastor Dan Krebs preach a sermon at Evangel Chapel Winnipeg on a topic that is not too widely preached on: “Idol Worship”.
As I listened to him preach this morning I got the sense that what he was saying was expressing the very heart of God and that his message was timely and one that has been lacking in our pulpits for some time. I remember hearing this same message preached many times while growing up by the preachers of old. These men and this message had a profound impact on my young life. They helped me to examine my heart and identify the idols that we’re stealing away my affections from the One who was jealous for my total devotion.
I found myself again understanding in a “deep” way the desire that God has to be number “one” in our lives. When it comes to god’s desire to be the only God in our lives He will never be satisfied with being the “runner up”. Recently I heard a great definition of runner up: “second place in a long line of losers!”
It seems to me that we spend a lot of time today focusing on all the problems that we have in the church such as worldliness, family breakdown, apathy, sexual sin, and the list goes on that we forget that these are all symptoms of a much deeper issue. Don’t get me wrong we should be troubled by what we see happening in our world and in the church today. In the Old Testament the people of God were always being warned of the same issues (read the Prophetic books). However at the same time the prophets of old seemed to be better at putting their finger on the reasons for sinful behaviour, “This is what the Lord says: “What fault did your ancestors find in me, that they strayed so far from me? They followed worthless idols and became worthless themselves. (Jeremiah 2:5 NIV). Strong words repeated over and over…
I believe that we live in a time when we have more idols or the opportunity for more idols then we have ever had before. There are so many technological advancements and devices that consume our time and “worth-ship”. So many things that we hold in high regard, perhaps higher than our desire for the [living] God or the things “of” God.
As I pondered the message again this evening before going to bed I realized that the idols in our lives not only hurt our relationship with God but they also adversely impact our relationships with our family and friends. All the time and energy that we focus on our idols diminishes our relationship with our loved ones. We lose our affection and desire to spend quality time with family and edifying the body of Christ.
In the end the ” biggest loser” is ourselves. We miss out on a vibrant relationship with our God full of joy and love. We end up empty and “seeking” and never satisfying the vacuum of our heart, soul and spirit. The greatest prophet that ever lived gave his followers the two most important commands, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ” (Luke 10:27 NIV)
Be blessed and go “deeper” in your devotion to God!