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Spreading the love of Jesus...the Cowboy Way!

      “The lesson of faith is not what turbulence you face but how you wind up on the other side.”

                         --Cliff Hudgins  (Grandpa's Legacy)

       "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him...."

                         --Job 13:14 (NKJV)
I was doing some reading this week and a thought struck my mind.  How many idols are there in our homes?    Most would probably say "none."  We are more enlightened, we know that there are no gods depicted by wood or stone, but wait a minute my friend.  What actually is an idol.  First let me draw your attention to Proverbs 25:14, "Like clouds and wind without rain is a man who boasts of gifts he does not give." (NIV)
       Okay, I can hear you.  What does this have to do with idols?  This is speaking about clouds, rain, gifts, and not giving, what does that have to do with idols?  Let me give you a simple definition of an idol used by Bob Beasley, "[An idol] is someone or something which boasts of gifts that he or it does not give."  An idol, a false god promises to give gifts which there is no way that it can fulfill.  People flock to false promises--they are idols for the promise cannot be fulfilled.  Idols then are deceptions.
       Idols are those things in which you put your trust over God.  Many people put their trust in wealth, a bank account, or the stock market.  There is a false promise there.  Sure there is nothing wrong with money, but our trust is not in money, but in God.  Others put their trust in the government and the leaders of that government.  Governments change, governments fall, and the people there, well, they'll promise you everything, but will not fulfill that promise--an idol.  Sports figures, entertainers can become idols if a person's heart is continually dwelling on those individuals.  In other words, an idol is something which controls your heart.  Jesus warned, "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." (Matthew 6:21, NKJV)
       Beasley writes, "We are idolators because of the sin that is in our hearts.  Given the chance, we often run to the first promise that looks good, forsaking the promises of God.  And when we place our hope in anything over and above the promises and providence of God, we are into idolatry."  Where do you run in times of trouble?  Where do you go when there is a storm on the horizon?  What is it you seek to help satisfy your longings?  Perhaps we turn to idols.
       There are four terms used for idols in Scripture.  1) terapim--symbolizes a god, or a divine presence.  They were often kept in households.  2) gillulim--this term appears 39 times in Ezekiel.  It is a disdainful term originally meaning "dung pellets."  3) 'elil--this is the word for a false god; it can mean "naught" or "vain."  4) eisolon--this is a New Testament term used to depict a false god.  The term means "an idea, fancy." (Vine's Expository)  Look at the idols of today--into which category do you see them?
       Paul refers to idols as "vain things."  It was something that was a phantom, something that could not bring about its promise.  Peter and Jude refer to false prophets "as clouds without rain.  I like what Jeremiah called idols, "scarecrows."  They cannot speak, they must be carried to the place where they are to stand, and they are to do something that they cannot do. (Jeremiah 10:5)  So I ask again, where is your trust?  Is it in idols, man-made ideas or creations, or is it in the word of God?   Do you turn to God or a person or a bank account in times of trouble?  Where is your heart?
               D.C. Adkisson

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