The challenging New Testament letter of 1 John ends with the poignant summation to “keep yourself from idols” (5:21). While our minds may revert to flannel graph images of bearded ancients bowing down to metallic statues, it is important to recognize that “idolatry” from a biblical perspective is a competing devotion to any priority that supplants, challenges or threatens our commitment and allegiance to God.
While we don’t encounter our friends and coworkers prostrate before golden images, we can’t help but see the myriad of alluring pursuits that work to squeeze out the supremacy of Christ in everyday life. So perhaps now more than ever we must be vigilant to “keep ourselves from idols.” Let’s make sure that Jesus and his Lordship come first and everything else is a distant second.
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