March 16, 2016

Shaking the Tree of Idolatry

Among other things...I have been intensely studying idolatry. Some remarkable facts fall out of this sin when you shake it. Over the next few posts I will note some of those interesting things to see what falls out. So why is idolatry named first in the Ten Commandments? Why does God view it as such a heinous sin? Simply put, it is a person's mind attempting to supplant God with something of the Creation rather than allow the Creator to rule one's thoughts and life. In doing this one's mind makes God secondary. Once one does this all other sins will follow.

It is the "gateway" sin (Romans 1:18-31). It is a cascading downhill fall of dominoes. Once the first one falls it is certain the rest will also unless someone or something steps in to stop the chain of sinful events. Our minds are idol factories and will make anything an idol. A stone, a log, our job, sex, our spouse, our children, life itself. Yeah, you heard that last one correctly. That is why we are called to die to self literally and figuratively. It is also why Paul said, “To live is Christ, but to die is gain." Even Christianity itself can become an idol...well, at least a perverted version of Christianity not based in Scripture. In truth nothing is ours it is God's and idolatry is an attempt to possess something that could never be ours.

As I said nothing is ours... it is God's and idolatry is an attempt to possess something that could never be ours, only His. We are attempting to usurp God's true ownership of "it" whatever "it" is. That is why God calls us to him and only Him. Get it?

Objects or things of the Creation are only objects. They only have the value we instill in them with our minds or what value God has stated or given them. That is why money (greed) and sex (adultery and other sexual sins) are in my mind, spiritual abnormalities at heart. At the heart of these issues is a form of sin called, you guesses it…idolatry. People on the other hand are more than objects, they are relationships we are called to by God. That is why God calls use to communal behavior.

We are called to be socially interactive. In the case of people and social interaction it is just the opposite of objects like money and things but it is still a form of idolatry. In our sin, instead of instilling value in people/relationships, our minds in their sinfulness will often try to diminish the relationship aspect of communal human interaction by objectifying people. Make them resources for our own use. Use them. Control them. Make them tools, not an extension of our being or love them as we would love God or ourselves. See the subtleties people?

Certainly the Devil is a problem here but he isn’t the main problem, only an instigator and facilitator. No, the issue is your heart and your mind. Take ownership of your sin…and then seek God for forgiveness.

You need to destroy the idols in your life or they will certainly destroy you.

More on this later as I continue to shake the tree.

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