More than one thousand years before the birth of Christ, God referred to people who worship man-made idols as “…spiritual prostitutes.” (Exodus 34:15) From God’s perspective, people either worship Him exclusively or they don’t worship Him at all.
Similar to marriage or other committed relationships, God will not share us with other gods or compete for their affection. Exclusivity to God is an essential part of our relationship with Him.
“Where your heart is, there is your god.” I remember reading that. I just don’t remember where.
I used to believe that the man-made idols God spoke of belonged only to another time and place. I was wrong. The man-made idols God spoke of are both conceptual and worldly in nature, much in the same way God is spiritual in nature but can take human form. Man-made idols are not of God. They are worldly things we love more than God, which lead us into spiritual promiscuity — and death.
In the past, I pursued money and the things that money buys – to excess. My self-worth was defined by my bank statement and the things that I owned. I did not always manage the gifts I’d been given as God intended. Eventually the things that I owned began owning me. I neglected my physical and spiritual health in the pursuit of financial success. Ultimately, I lost my way — and crashed spiritually. Mercifully, Jesus intervened on my behalf and saved me. Thanks to His grace, I’m doing my best to heal and realign my priorities.
Christ cautions us about placing our faith in money and the material things it buys. He warns that they can be a trap. “Don’t store up treasures here on earth where they can erode away or may be stolen. Store them in heaven where they will never lose their value and are safe from thieves. If your profits are in heaven, your heart will be there too.” (Matthew 6:19-21)
Jesus also teaches, “You cannot serve two masters: God and money. For you will hate one and love the other, or else the other way around.” (Matthew 6:24)
I was blessed to realize I needed to make a conscious choice between God and money: I chose God. For life without God is no life at all.