Worthless Idols – 2 Kings 17:5; Jer 2:5

They Followed worthless idols and became worthless themselves (2 Kings 17:15; Jer 2:5)

The concept of idolatry in the Bible is powerful and complex, diverse and problematic (Rosner, 2000, p.569). The topic reoccurs throughout Scripture; Israel continually forgets God and turns to that which is false (Judges. 3:7). Beale (2008) tenders “Whatever your heart clings to or relies on for ultimate security is an idol” (p. 17). Whether a heart issue or the misconception of God; one thing is clear, idolatry is severely condemned within the Bible.

Rosner proposes “Idolatry is the ultimate expression of unfaithfulness to God and for that reason is the occasion for severe divine punishment (Lev. 26:27-33, Num. 33:51-56; Deut. 29:16-28)” (2000, p. 570). Wright (2006) suggests the primal problem with idolatry is that it blurs the distinction between the Creator God and the creation. This both damages creation (including ourselves) and diminishes the glory of the Creator (p.187).

What do you worship?

These verses from 2 Kings and Jeremiah extend the diagnosis of our idolatrous nature. When we follow worthless idols we ourselves become worthless. I have often visited the drug addicted in their homes. As a onetime addict I do not judge them; however, I am able to use discernment. The addict and their home often look as worthless as the syringe they covet. Blackened and dirty so to the spiritual condition of the idolatrous heart as it manifests itself into the physical realm. The life ultimately becomes worthless. Yet idols are not only gold statutes or drugs.

What about the sports fanatic with painted face whose ‘god’ is a football team, whose idols are the players themselves? Or the entrepreneur who covets wealth as a means of security? Recently Brad Pitt was quoted stating he had originally come from a very Christian upbringing, however, when he left home he tried something new – ‘Satanism’. I have made a pact and its working out well were his very words. One can only hope he was joking.  Billy Graham once visited Maryln Munroe to offer her Christ. She told him she didnt need ‘his Jesus’, not long after she was found dead of overdose. Whilst Billy Graham was unaware of such timing, God was not. Idols in any form are worthless. Yet we follow them and find our own lives as worthless as the idol itself. Our spiritual diagnosis, our inner being, can be so detached from the living God that we are blinded to the point of being oblivious (Matt 13:13).

When we follow idols we become worthless. It is that simple. When we place anything above God the Creator we create an idol. As we lie to ourselves that something in our life is not an idol we find letting it go can be the most difficult withdrawal one may face. Take a spiritual inventory of your life and ask yourselves with all sincerity (and then ask God) where the idols in your life are. If you are honest with yourself – you will hear Him point to a few. The hard part is then willingly giving them up. Thankfully, God will always replace them with something much more valuable. Namely – Himself.

Listen to Ross King sing about it – Here