One thing that I have learned in life throughout my education, work, and literally just everyday situations, is to pay close attention to things that are reiterated multiple times. Likewise, in the Bible, God says things that are very important more than once to make sure that his people take heed. One of these things that is repeated to the Israelites is about idols. In Exodus 20 God is giving Moses the 10 commandments and he says that the people should have no other gods before him and that they shouldn’t make images of anything on earth or in heaven to worship. While Moses was still up on the mountain the people did exactly what God had said not to do. Once Moses comes down and sees what the people have done, he is furious to the point that he breaks the tablets that he had received from God with the commandments on them. Numerous times after this situation God reminds the people that they should not have false idols in fact I counted 100 verses where idols are mentioned and minus the ones talking about specific situations where there were idols involved, such as Rachael taking her father Laban’s idols, the others are warnings about Gods people worshiping idols.
How does this correlate to today? We aren’t out here building statues or worshiping them, and we definitely know better than to give our praise to anything other than God. The thing is, we do, unknowingly at times, build idols. Pastor Tim Keller gave a very simple definition of what an idol is, He said “Anything that is more important than God.” That is such a simple definition but if we are being honest, it should convict us all because we have all placed things ahead of God in our priorities. I personally have a recent example. I get very busy with my schoolwork, my job, and my children. Just last week God placed things on my heart to write for my blog post but because of the external things going on, I put it off. Not even taking into consideration that we are to give God a portion of our time, talents, and treasure just as what is owed to him but on a daily basis, we should want to spend time in His presence as a way to know Him better. What precedence does that set when you can’t take a portion of your time for the one who created time and holds time in his hands. I understand that some things may be time sensitive but our time with God should not be an afterthought, but rather, intentional time spent in his presence. As you go about your week, think about how you can better spend time with God and not let things take priority over Him. This can be as small as having intentional prayer and worship time at home to as big as letting your job know that you can’t work every Sunday because your time in God’s presence is the most important thing to you.
Over the next two weeks we will discuss not making idols out of your talents and your treasure as well. Hopefully we can be a better steward of what God has given us, together.