Fleeing Idols In Corinth -- Mississippi, That Is
"You shall have no other gods before me . . ."
In his old age, the apostle John wrote a letter to churches in Asia Minor. It described genuine faith, the dangers of heresy, and encouragement to live as followers of Christ. Strangely, though, John concluded the letter abruptly with the words, "Flee idolatry."
To our modern ears, it sounds as if John offers an anachronistic admonition, a practical warning to the people of his day about a danger to which only they were exposed. Idols, you know, are not exactly at the top of our contemporary list of struggles.
Or, are they? Idols are anything to which a person looks to for identity, security, comfort, acceptance, and intimacy. In that sense, an idol is anything God meant for good we twist into gods.
Christians are told to "FLEE" noting the urgency, danger, and allure of idols. Therefore, we are compelled to test ourselves. Below are some great questions to use to help us discover that we are not only capable of having idols; we are, in fact, already consumed by them. The hope of such an exercise is not depression, but repentance -- realizing that Christ is the only object of worship that offers the fullness of the security, identity, comfort, prestige, acceptance, etc. that we obviusly desperately seek in good, but inadequate, substitutes.
“Life only has meaning/I only have worth if…
I have power and influence over others.” (Power Idolatry)
I am loved and respected by _____.” (Approval Idolatry)
I have this kind of pleasure experience, a particular quality of life.” (Comfort idolatry)
I am able to get mastery over my life in the area of _____.” (Control idolatry)
people are dependent on me and need me.” (Helping Idolatry)
someone is there to protect me and keep me safe.” (Dependence idolatry)
I am completely free from obligations or responsibilities to take care of someone.” (Independence idolatry)
I am highly productive and getting a lot done.” (Work idolatry)
I am being recognized for my accomplishments, and I am excelling in my work.” (Achievement idolatry)
I have a certain level of wealth, financial freedom, and very nice possessions.” (Materialism idolatry)
I am adhering to my religion’s moral codes and accomplished in its activities.” (Religion idolatry)
This one person is in my life and happy to be there, and/or happy with me.” (Individual person idolatry)
I feel I am totally independent of organized religion and am living by a self-made morality.” (Irreligion idolatry)
My race and culture is ascendant and recognized as superior.” (Racial/cultural idolatry)
A particular social grouping or professional grouping or other group lets me in.” (Inner ring idolatry)
My children and/or my parents are happy and happy with me.” (Family idolatry)
Mr. or Ms. “Right” is in love with me.” (Relationship Idolatry)
I am hurting, in a problem; only then do I feel worthy of love or able to deal with guilt.” (Suffering idolatry)
my political or social cause is making progress and ascending in influence or power.” (Ideology idolatry)
I have a particular kind of look or body image.” (Image idolatry)
More in ReSTORY
June 27, 2017The Gospel Changes Everything
February 6, 2017True Spirituality: The Transforming Power of the Gospel
January 2, 2017Finding Happiness In The New Year