Made By Man
"Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven (carved) image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth." Exodus 20:4
My parents used to get a Christian magazine every month filled with interesting articles. The magazine was placed in the bathroom, so naturally, I used it to read it from cover to cover and sometimes I would read through it a second time if the story was really good. I remember reading once about a missionary who was on the mission field trying to win the natives to Christ, but many of the natives were entrenched in idol worship. Because of the traditions that had been passed down to them, they made various carved images and believed these images provided for all their needs and kept them safe.
The missionary had a hard time witnessing to the natives as they were entrenched in this false religion, until one day he had a brilliant idea. He decided he would be creative in trying to reach these natives, so one night he destroyed all of the idols in their worship area except for one. He went to bed and was awakened by the cry of the people who were quite upset to find their prized possessions littered all over the ground in little pieces. They immediately came to the missionary and accused him of destroying their idols. The missionary refuted this claim and pointed to the one idol who was not damaged or harmed in any way. He put the blame on the one idol and said he might have been the one to destroy the other idols. He argued that maybe the god got jealous or angry and decided to take out the other idols. The people were not buying his rationale, and this is when he started to gain some ground.
The natives began to argue that it was impossible for the wooden figure to destroy the other wooden figures because it was not able to move on its own. The people argued that the idol had no power in itself to do any harm or perform such actions. The missionary pointed out to them that if the idol had no power to do such action, and it was ridiculous to think that it did, then it was also ridiculous to pray to these idols and expect blessings and protections from them. If the wooden figures they had carved, propped up, and prayed to for years were simply powerless figures, then why did they dedicate their lives to worshipping them? The people began to see that their idol worship was quite foolish and their anger towards the missionary subsided. They began to realize that there is only one true God and these wooden figures were a far cry from the Creator who made heaven and earth.
We might chuckle at these natives for worshipping false gods, but we often set up idols in our own lives that we worship as well. We save money thinking it will protect and save us from all things, not realizing that our God will meet all of our needs. We seek to obtain a job that will solve all of our problems and worship at the altar of corporate America, only to find that pursuit to be empty of meaning. We seek to be the healthiest specimen that ever walked the planet, but yet we forget about our walk with God. We seek education as a ticket out of our situation, but yet forget that knowledge puffs up. We put what the world sees as important on our personal altar and worship it. We may wear "lucky" charms or have images that we don't even realize we worship that go against God's commandments.
Where are you today friend? Have you lost sight of the true God? Have you set up idols in your own life? Have you put your faith in that which is not of God? Do you place value on the things of this world only to find that they can never satisfy or fulfill? Who or what are you worshipping today? May we tear down the idols we have set up in our life, and may we turn to the one true God who is the creator of all things. John 4:23 states, “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.” Worship the Father and ignore that which detracts you from Him.
Stay in the fight!