Generation Cedar

What is the one thing that evokes God’s anger more than anything else?  According to Scripture, it’s the worshiping of other idols/gods.  It is what He judged a nation for more quickly than anything else.

In the OT, idols were often actual effigies–physical gods the people created.  They wanted answers and they wanted something to worship.  All humans are spirit-creatures with an insatiable desire to worship.  C.S. Lewis said, “You do not have a soul, you are a soul.  You have a body.” All humans worship something.

This is why we must understand there is no such thing as “non-religious”, in any area .  In the absence of God-worship, there is self-worship, by default.  Such is called humanism, and it is a religion that exalts itself against God. (A reminder that this is my primary argument against the public school system for Christians.)

Christians often don’t check themselves enough here.  We hear “idol-worshipers will be punished” and we smugly wave that one off and pat ourselves on the back for “not being one of those”.  And while we could talk about different idols all day, the most dangerous idol now, and throughout all history is the idol of SELF.

We worship ourselves.  Even Christians.  I’m not necessarily even talking about our selfishness, but our belief that our wisdom is above God’s.  Who do we look to for answers about decisions we make?  Do we believe Scripture contains them for all of life?  Do we live like we believe that?

I am deeply convicted by this verse:

“He who trusts in his own heart is a fool…” Proverbs 28:26

The popular addage,  “follow your own heart” is a feel-good sentiment wrapped in idol-worship.  Don’t follow your heart.  It is deceitful.

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16 Responses

  1. One thing I learned that stuck with me when I went through “The Love Dare” was how it said “don’t follow your heart, choose to lead your heart instead”. Great advice.

  2. That’s ridiculous. I don’t believe in a higher power. In fact, I think the fact that you DO is evidence of a lower mentality. 🙂 So shut up.

  3. We have so many idols in our culture; they are often simply not material idols.

    We worship relationships–particularly romantic relationships; I know I’ve been guilty of this. As you said, we can worship ourselves–and most of us do from time to time even if we’re not outright humanists. We worship medical science. We worship beauty and youth. There are many shrines today–just no altars.

  4. So true, Kelly. Everyone has a god. Just not The God. Anytime I feel a strong spiritual attack, I always ask God to show me if there is sin in my life producing it. If there is, I repent, if not, I fight. I remember Paul warning we believers to only suffer for Christ, not as a partaker in sin which brings the suffering on ourselves. I wonder how many of our problems, as Christ Followers, we have brought on ourselves with the displacment of God from His throne while we place ourselves on the throne instead. I know this is a little off, but along the same vein, I hope. It was the first thing that popped into my mind.

  5. Deborah, why would you come to the blog of a professed Christian and then insult her for being a Christian? You may think you have a higher intellect than we (highly debatable), but you certainly would benefit from a lesson in common courtesy.

  6. Kelly,
    Well said. The image of a fool I see is someone who goes ranting and raging around the town square. (Read “Internet”). Theirs is a dirt-covered face and ragged, unkempt clothing. (Read: “How rebelliousness looks and smells to God”)
    When they’re not babbling pure nonsense, such fools try to provoke others who are busy minding their own business, taking care of their families, and being productive members of their community.
    We should pray for these miserable individuals…some of them may have been us before we accepted His grace.

  7. Kelly,

    What you have said is SO true! I think many people see idols as actual physical images, but they can be SO much more! As Christians, we really need to be careful of idol worship.

  8. Thank you Kelly, for posting this. We are all idolaters by nature. God graciously and mercifully changes our heart to worship the One who is rightfully to be worshiped.
    “All humans are spirit-creatures with an insatiable desire to worship. C.S. Lewis said, “You do not have a soul, you are a soul. You have a body.” All humans worship something.
    This is why we must understand there is no such thing as “non-religious”, in any area . In the absence of God-worship, there is self-worship, by default. Such is called humanism, and it is a religion that exalts itself against God. (A reminder that this is my primary argument against the public school system for Christians.)” I love this part of your post- I am going to memorize a version of this as part of my response to those who insist otherwise or argue that Christians ought to be salt and light in the public schools!

  9. Part of the problem for me is that in a day’s time, can any of us really never fall into humanism? None of us can wholly follow God in 24 hours; even in our sleep our minds can fall.

    I guess for me, too, the problem isnt on what *I* am not doing, but what I *am* doing-trying to Love God with the whole mind, heart, and body, etc. Worshipping idols isnt something that can be avpoided by trying harder-its something that when God is given more of *us*, idol worship by default, perishes slowly from us…..

  10. That last line… AMEN I’m always told in situations such as modesty or college that people have to trust hearts in these issues, and I can come to the same conclusion. how many times in the WORD are we told that the heart is not to be trusted and is wicked?? We need not to lean on our own hearts, understanding, but studying His WORD and lean on His. Thank you for sharing. : )

  11. For, Me, I do not use the phrase, “trust in my onw heart”, but I think when people do, it is just a saying…if I believe my heart, soul, and mind are connected and even inhabited by The Spirit, it is through these parets of me that I can hear God. If I were to say, “I am going to go with my gut”….I am not relying on SELF, but really what I am saying is “God is with me, I beleive He inhabits me; therefore, I can listen to my gut”. The bible does not answer every bitty question…many things it states are generalizations…(modesty)…so If I pick up an outfitr that morning, and arent sure, I can follow my gut without needlessly worrying that I am offending God or man.

    Sometimes as Christians I wonder if we get get caught up in ‘cliche’ phrases that we have been taught to robotically define….the heart *is* deceitfully wicked, but as we allow God to inhabit and take more of it, I do believe we can in some things (as it is revealed to us), follow our hearts.

  12. AM,

    I can absolutely vouch for the truth that God speaks to individuals through our own consciences. And I can also attest to the fact that our own hearts can deceive us into thinking we are on the right track about something.

    I think this is one reason Paul was so adamant that we not openly participate in or debate about (not-specifically-sinful-according-to-Scripture) things that cause observing believers to question their own convictions. Deliberately flaunting one’s freedom in Christ in front of those who I know have reservations is not love and shows a lack of concern for their spiritual well-being.

    Once a person begins to just follow whatever “the other guy” is doing, then he is no longer listening for God’s personalized instruction to himself. I am not talking about the currently popular “whatever works” attitude, here, but rather the direction of the Holy Spirit that comes from reading God’s word and asking Him for wisdom.

    Once there is no feeling of conviction over “little”, debatable matters, then it is easy to move on with that numbed conscience into realms of truly sinful behavior.

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