Read Isaiah 57:1-5
The righteous man perishes,and no one lays it to heart; devout men are taken away, while no one understands. For the righteous man is taken away from calamity; he enters into peace; they rest in their beds who walk in their uprightness. But you, draw near, sons of the sorceress, offspring of the adulterer and the loose woman. Whom are you mocking?Against whom do you open your mouth wide and stick out your tongue? Are you not children of transgression, the offspring of deceit, you who burn with lust among the oaks, under every green tree, who slaughter your children in the valleys, under the clefts of the rocks?
- Are there idols in your life that you need to break free from?
- Have the demands of a busy life pushed God out of the day?
- What changes do you need to make? (How can God help you?)
Recently my pastor gave a sermon about how the people in the Bible were just like us. It's a bit hard to take. After all, we don't dress in long robes, bring sacrifices to a temple, practice polygamy, or worship carved images.
However, a close look at of Isaiah 57 reveals that Israel's idolatry resembles our modern-day idolatry in many ways. Whether it's astrology or palm readers, we look to fortune tellers (verse 3). The pornography industry, which generates billions of dollars in sales each year, likely traces its lineage back to our inclination to give in to our lustful desires in ways that dishonor God (verse 5).
Idolatry at its core means much more than bowing down to carved images. Any time we put anyone or anything above God, we are idolizing.
In today's Western society, idolatry often manifests itself in the form of "busy-ness." Consider that the majority of Christ-followers don't open a Bible at all outside of church services. When asked why, nine out of ten will say they believe it's important but their lives are just too busy. Verse 13 shows us the dangers of this idolatry. Whether it's a carved image or our busyness, these idols can't save us in times of trouble. Thankfully God reminds us that we can always turn from those idols and back to Him.
Holy Lord, you are the God above all gods. I should not let anything or anyone to ever come before you. Help me today to identify my modern day idols and to replace them with a closer relationship with you. Amen.