Union Ridge Church

Wednesday, September 14, 2022

by Reverend Dan on September 16, 2022
We live in a world of idols. The problem is, God says, “DON’T.” (See Commandments #1 AND #2.) Modern-day example: one of the most popular shows on TV for the last 20 years has the word “Idol” in its name. That in itself is a commentary on how much we love to create things to worship and then center our lives around them. Consider this: in the twenty or so weeks that show is on every season, how many episodes do you miss? Conversely, how many Sundays during that same time . . . you know where I’m going.

The truth is, we make idols out of just about anything and everything, and don’t even realize it’s happening. Slowly, over time, we come to worship it and give it more time and importance in our lives than we give God, and that's the very definition of an idol.

We idolize money. We idolize material possessions. We idolize vanity - our appearance. We idolize status and sex and technology and fame. We idolize political parties. Think not? It’s the norm these days for political parties to abandon the principles of God in order to get cultural votes. That qualifies as an idol. And we even (maybe especially) idolize religion. We do it to the point that most churches today are ad hoc members of the “Pharisee” denomination. Numbers, budgets, buildings, constitutions, by-laws – they’re all more important than what the Bible says, including that little thing Jesus left the church with: “Go and make disciples of all nations.”

In the 1st chapter of his letter to the church at Rome, Paul talks about what brought the wrath of God on the people. He said, “They exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator who is forever to be praised. Amen.” (That “Amen” means “so be it.” In other words, God has dropped the mic - you don’t get a chance to respond.) So, it’s not just worshipping idols that’s the issue; it’s creating them as well. The problem when you do that is you have begun to worship not only the idol, but yourself as well, because you’re saying what God created isn’t “good enough.” And suddenly you have become your own god. It may do us well to return to one of the practices of our Jewish ancestors. Each morning when they arose, they repeated the “Shema”, which means “to hear.” It is found in Deuteronomy, and it says, “Hear, O Israel, that the Lord your God is One. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and all your soul, and all your strength.” (Jesus would add the “all your mind” later in the Gospels when He taught from this passage. Probably a sermon in that.) If we did that – if we focused all of our heart and our soul and our strength on worshipping God - it would leave no time or energy for creating and worshipping our own idols.

Bottom line? Everybody worships something. And it’s easy to tell what it is. Just follow your heart and your wallet, and it will show you what your idol is.

What do you worship?​​​​​​​