April 12, 2005
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the father upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.” --Exodus 20:4-6
Image is everything, right? Some people think so. I believe that image is everything if you’re talking about the right kind of image—the image of God. What is your image of God? How you answer that question will determine how you live your life.
Your image of God will determine your self-image, the image of your family, and the image of your career. Everything you do is dependant upon your image of God. If the first commandment asks about who God is and we know that He is like no other god because He lives, then the second commandment asks the question: What is God like?
Most people today, especially Americans, are breaking the second commandment, because there are so many false images of God. The first commandment forbids the worship of a false god, and the second commandment forbids the false worship of the true God. You might want to read that sentence one more time and let it sink in.
It deals with who we understand God to be. We need to break down the false images in our lives of God. Reject the false substitutes for God. So many live in the dark shadows of the relics and ritual of religion rather than in the bright light of God Himself. Mankind is instinctively religious because we were made to worship God, but it is our conception of God that oftentimes gets misunderstood.
Some people think of God as tough cop who can’t wait for you to make a mistake so He can punish you. But the Lord is truly compassionate and slow to anger (Psalm 103:8). Others think of Him as powerful military general who barks orders all the time, when in fact the Bible tells us that as His children we can call Him, “Abba, Father,” or daddy. Then there are those who see God as a mechanic who fixes things all the time. And finally the classic God-as-a-grandfather image sitting in a rocking chair and watching care over you and me.
These are all false images—even the theory of radical feminists that the Lord is not “God the Father,” but instead “God the mother.” We dare not change the image of God into our own image. The very essence, character, and nature of God are described in the Bible. It’s important that we study the Bible and devote our time to understand who God truly is. He is Alpha, Omega, Counselor, Friend, everlasting Prince of Peace, Almighty One who reigns supremely over you and me.
DON’T LIVE OFF OF THE WORLD’S CHANGING IMAGE OF GOD.
INSTEAD LEARN THE TRUTH OF WHO GOD REALLY IS IN HIS WORD