Leszek Kolakowski, the Polish philosopher, in one of his essays, entitled, “Why a calf? Idolatry and death of God, wrote that “we are sacrificing God on the altar of our own selfish interests, as if we were worshiping ourselves instead of Him.”
Idolatry is on the one hand very comfortable and on the other, very dangerous.
Firstly, I say comfortable because of a cluster of things – easy access, as it were, to the act in itself – can be done any time, any place; then there is the easiness with which the heart is inclined to do it; and also the imediacy of its reward – somekind of fleeting sentimental pleasure that boosts the mood of the “worshiper” – which is actually of a more complex nature than I have the space and time here to expand on).
Secondly, I say dangerous, based on two things:
1. For the disastrous exchange of the worshiped person: we replace God with ourselves, or some man made thing.
2. For what David says in Psalm 115:4-8
“Their idols are silver and gold, the work of human hands.
They have mouths, but do not speak; eyes, but do not see.
They have ears, but do not hear; noses, but do not smell.
They have hands, but do not feel; feet, but do not walk;
and they do not make a sound in their throat.
Those who make them BECOME LIKE THEM; so do all who trust in them.”
Idolatry has https://www.acheterviagrafr24.com/achat-viagra-en-ligne-quebec/ the power to make us mute, blind, and unable to feel or move, just like the idol we worship, which in itself has no powers at all. Mute and blind towards the real God. Unable to feel or move – feel Him and move/act according to His guidance.
These comforts and these dangers show how easily can a heart be deceived. We see this in the book of Judges, where the text talks about Israel doing evil in the eyes of the Lord. Judges 3:7 says – “The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord; they forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs.” What was the evil? Forgetting God and serving idols.
In Galatians 5:19-20 Paul writes – “Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, IDOLATRY, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
So the question is: how do we keep ourselves from idolatry? John writes in his first letter: “Little children, keep yourselves from idols.” (1 John 5:21) Yes, but how?
Paul gives us the answer in Galatians 5:16-17 – “walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.”
Therefore, on Sunday, in celebrating Pentecost, we celebrate the Spirit that helps us put to death any desires for idolatry, any desires to put ourselves in the place of God, any desires for “sacrificing God on the altar of our own selfish interests.”