A young man was really battling his thought life. He shared with his accountability group that he had pinpointed one of the issues that was escalating the problem– his MP3 player. The music he was listening to was affecting his mood and thought life. It was affecting his decisions and the way he treated his family. So one of the guys in his group suggested that he bring his MP3 player with him next time they meet. And when he brought it to their next meeting, he asked him, “Are you serious about tearing down this stronghold in your life?”
The guy looked at him warily but nodded yes.
Then the guy handed him a hammer and said, “Prove it!”
This is what you are to do to them: Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones, cut down their Asherah poles and burn their idols in the fire. Deuteronomy 7:5
God doesn’t play around when it comes to idols. When He gave the Israelites directions about what to do when they entered the Promised Land, He told them to completely wipe out the idols in the land. He used some pretty serious words like “break down,” “smash,” “cut down,” “burn their idols in the fire.”
Nope, God wasn’t messing around.
And neither should we.
God’s stance on idols still stands today. Exodus 20:3 says, “You shall have no other gods before me.” We are to treat our idols with the same severity that the Israelites did. If there is anything in our lives that is taking His place or competing with Him, it needs to go.
And it might require that we take drastic measures.
A few years ago, television had become an idol in my life. I watched it constantly. The more I watched, the more immune I became to the affect it had on me. Then when I began to get more serious about my walk with the Lord and started consistently reading God’s Word, the Lord began to convict me and show me that TV had become an unhealthy idol in my life. So Skip and I talked about it and decided it was time to cut the head off of the snake. So we cancelled our satellite television.
Yeah, it was hard, but it was also a relief. We felt like a weight had been lifted. It really helped too. It wasn’t a temptation anymore because it was gone.
We cannot play around with idols. Oh, but isn’t that easier said than done? Sometimes we think we do a good job hiding them. We might keep our idols in the closet, in a box, or sweep them under a rug. They might be out of sight, but we keep them close–close enough so we can bring them back out when we start to crave them. But when we do, we play a very dangerous game. And if we aren’t careful, what we think we are in control of will soon control us.
That’s what happens with idols. That’s how they operate. They take over. They push God out of our lives. They become our gods.
What you think you possess will end up possessing you.
So remember that guy I was telling you about?
Well he took that hammer from his friend. He picked up his MP3 player, walked outside to the parking lot, and threw it on the ground. Then he swung that hammer and smashed that sucker to smithereens.
A little extreme? Yes!
But what a powerful moment of victory!
So what about you? Are there “idols” in your life that need to go? Ask the Lord to reveal anything in your life that you might be putting before Him. Then don’t hide it or hesitate to deal with it. Do whatever it takes to get rid of any idols. Take drastic measures to break them down, smash them, cut down, or burn them until there’s nothing left.
Nothing left–but Him!
As my daughter was praying the other night, she prayed, “God, You’re the best God ever!”
Yep! That pretty much sums it up right there.
There is no god like our God.
So what are you waiting for? Go get your hammer and start swinging!
For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
he is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the nations are idols,
but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before him;
strength and glory are in his sanctuary.