September 23, 2010

Idols of Our Time

Jeremiah 7:1-26

Walk in obedience to all I command you, that it may go well with you.
Jeremiah 7:23


We know there is a bright future in store for those who walk faithfully with God. But in our verses for today from the prophet Jeremiah, God warns that he is angry when people do not obey his commands.

God goes so far as to tell Jeremiah not to pray for the people of his nation who have rejected God and have turned to idols. God reminds Jeremiah of the covenant he made with his people: “Obey me, and I will be your God and you will be my people.”

We need to hear these words. We are often tempted to turn to our own idols as well. Maybe they are not made of wood, stone, or metal, but they are idols nevertheless. Some people worship power; others, sex; and so many worship money—or even all three at the same time.

We can make idols out of material things, status, wealth, pleasure-seeking, leisure, work, school, sports, hobbies, friends, our church, our own abilities—anything that we might put ahead of God in our lives. We need to ask ourselves, What do we love with all our heart? What grabs our attention? What do we most enjoy?

The future for all who walk with God is very bright. But a future without God is bleak.

In God’s strength, we can seek first his kingdom and his righteousness (Matthew 6:33), and the walkway of our life with God will lead to “a delightful inheritance” (Psalm 16:6).

Lord, help us not to worship the idols of our time, which are so numerous and tempting. Help us to love you with all our heart, and to enjoy you forever. Amen.

About the author — Adrian A. Helleman

Dr. Adrian Helleman served as a pastor in British Columbia before being called to serve as a missionary-teacher in the Philippines. He and his wife, Wendy, later taught philosophy at Moscow State University in Russia, and then philosophy and theology at the University of Jos in Nigeria. They have also lectured in Canada, the United States, South Africa, and Tanzania. They have three children and three grandchildren.

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