Psalms 115:3-8 ESV Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases. (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.
G.K. Beale, my favorite theologian, wrote a book called We Become What we Worship: A Biblical Theology of Idolatry. It is an incredibly important Bible doctrine that we all need to know well. Beale points to the verses above from Psalm 115 as his central text. Especially verse 8 – those who make them become like them.
The typical local church of our day is worshipping false gods fashioned by their own devices and imaginations. As they do so, they themselves become increasingly blind. They have eyes but do not see, ears but do not hear – just like their idols.
These false entities that claim to be of Christ take their idolatry further and press everyone to worship it. Many of you have seen this firsthand. They worship a god that forgives everyone no matter what, who counts wicked people as God’s children, and who oppresses the oppressed if they refuse to go along with the game.
Paul warns us about the thing:
Galatians 1:8-9 ESV But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. (9) As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
We become what we worship. Did you get that? We become what we worship. If we worship a false Christ, we will become increasingly like that false Christ. We will not be like the real Jesus. We will be a portrait copy of a false Jesus. WE will oppress the oppressed. WE will blink at evil. WE won’t really like the God of the Bible.
So don’t be pressed into the worship of an idol god. Don’t hang out on Sundays in an idol temple. Be wise about who is really behind it all:
Deuteronomy 32:16-17 ESV They stirred him to jealousy with strange gods; with abominations they provoked him to anger. (17) They sacrificed to demons that were no gods, to gods they had never known, to new gods that had come recently, whom your fathers had never dreaded.
Patriarchy is a false god, an idol for those whose pride says, “God loves me more than you because I am like God.”
Millions of women and children are sacrificed on the alters of patriarchy every single day.
Their spirits are bound with an evil soul crushing bondage and they are beaten into submission if they will not bow down to this idol of men’s pride and false superiority.
The followers of the god of Patriarchy have ears that can not hear and hearts that are seared against the suffering of their own flesh and blood children.
But the real God hears the cries of the victims of this false god and his followers. And His hand is open to us. He brings us rescue and healing.
Great post, Jeff! Thank you.
Great example byes. The idol patriarch.
Yep, there’s for-real (Christ-like) patriarchy…but, good luck finding that. So much of the red-pill/video-gaming sort has plagued all of us for … years.
I recently read a book about abuse that pointed out something interesting: coping mechanism (especially when developed during childhood) which help a person survive abuse often become idols later because we continue to rely on them rather than on God. What protects/separates us from the abuse equally protects/separates us from God. I certainly experienced this with coping mechanisms I developed to simply difficult things in my childhood: when I was made fun of at school, I decided to build a wall around myself. I imagined myself almost like a turtle. This kept kids unkind words from hurting me and it equally kept both people and God at arms length. Self-protection was an idol I had to allow God to tear down.
Not sure if I explained it all that well.
I see other idols in the church. A big one is that to be in church you have to have it all together (or look like it).
A work of human hands, a big idol in this day and age, — the cell phone. Most people can go no more then five minutes without looking at their phone for one thing or another. Kindly ask someone your trying to visit with to put their phone down for half a hour and watch the expression on their face! It is a sad day when a electronic device is more important then conversing in the flesh with another person. A idol indeed!
They are addictive alright.