Idolatry versus Worship

idolatry versus worship

I heard an interesting thing from God today while I was listening to a message by Martha. He said, “You can have idolatry of Me.” How strange! I’ve witnessed people with idolatry of the Bible, where they prefer the written Word to relationship and interaction with God. Somehow these people equate God’s Word to God Himself. And yes, Christ is the Word, but Christ is not only the Word. You must have the Spirit of the Word to read the Word to you, or all you’ll have is words, no matter that God authored them. The Word and the Spirit must be in union or you’ll have legalism, which is idolatry of the words rather than love and relationship with the God who wrote them.

Idolatry of God?

Idolatry of God?
Back to my question, how do you have idolatry of God? I feel this was His answer to me: When you serve a god who is your idea of God rather than actually God, this is idolatry. Whoa!

I know I’ve personally been guilty of this at various points in my life. I’ve accused God of being like my earthly father or even like myself, and this is an idolatry He can’t bless. In the message I was listening to, Martha said:

“God will never honor our service of idols. He will never let fruit be there and He will never bless it.”
Leave Thy Parents, Disc 2: “Gods with a Little ‘g’”

Our Idolatry of a Idea

Our Idolatry of a Idea
If we are relating to our idea of God, we aren’t in relationship with God. We’re not given liberty to fashion God into our own image. He is Himself alone and not the projections that I affix onto Him. And as long as I struggle with Him, trying to fit Him into my box of understanding, He will frustrate me. He is not obligated to interact with or bless my delusion.

When I assume that He’ll respond towards me as I think He should, He just might not meet those expectations. Also, He may not fall in line with my judgments of Him. Just because I believe God to be a particular way, doesn’t necessarily make it so. I have witnessed people with ecstatic delusions of God, believing Him to be nothing but fawning of them. And I have observed people deluded that God was nothing but cruelty and abuse. Both of these are two sides of the same coin and idols, not God.

My imaginings of God are simply idols before Him, not Him. If I have learned anything of Him it would be this: our God is completely unpredictable. He surprises me all the time. It’s just like Father Cavanaugh said in the movie Rudy: “Son, in thirty-five years of religious study, I’ve come up with only two hard, incontrovertible facts; there is a God, and I’m not Him.

More to come in my next post…

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    • Sam

      Absolutely John, and you wouldn’t imagine how many (hidden) examples of this there is in our Bible! I wonder really if any false god that is named in there is not precisely a “custom-made” god out of ourselves, each fashioned to our thinking and our likes.

      I believe then, we are so in debt with this Son: “If the Son makes you free, then you are indeed free” (of those self-tailored gods in the image of ourselves). Then, my debt to Him is more than huge. I am bond-slave to Him if this is really true, as it really is.

      Love and care.

    • Sue

      Bless you JOHN, another reminder to “let God be God” and i am not God. Never had this revelation or knowledge that my relationship with God was what I had made therefore, an “IDOL”. Delusions and lies, I am guilty.

    • tammy

      ‘“You can have idolatry of Me.”’
      “When you serve a god who is your idea of God rather than actually God, this is idolatry.”

      He’s just too cool! I’m sure I will now stand back and consider my thoughts of God with the need to ask Him, “Is this You LORD or just my idea of You?”

      Thank you John for always keeping me on my toes!


    • Susan

      Such a good word John… And as long as I struggle with Him, trying to fit Him into my box of understanding, He will frustrate me.

      We see this all the time, in ourselves and the church at large! It shuts down the work of the Holy Spirit and hinders relationships.

      Folks going to and fro seeking to have their ears tickled.

    • Bruce Dickey

      The making of the golden calf and calling it Jehovah may be the first clear example of God’s chosen Idolizing God.

      “…you shall know them by their fruit”
      There will always be fruit; the question is will it be of God or of man?

    • Cindy Pollard

      Loose ALL. Gain Christ. Phil. 3:7-11

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