What Is Idolatry?



If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.”  First John 1:10 (NKJV)


      If we are honest, we must admit that we all struggle with sin; if we say that we have not sinned, we indeed make God a liar according to First John 1:10. We may struggle with different kinds of sins, but we all struggle with it! In the Old Testament, we see a man by the name of David sinning in the most disturbing ways. David commits adultery with a married woman and then plots to have her husband murdered. Her husband, by the way, was one of his most faithful soldiers.

      In the New Testament we have an Apostle by the name of Paul admitting his struggles with sin. In Romans 7:14-25 Paul tells us:

14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin. 15 For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. 16 If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. 17 But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. 18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. 19 For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. 20 Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me.

21 I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. 22 For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.” (NKJV)

      Scripture is giving us David as an example of a sinful man in the Old Testament. Scripture is also giving us Paul in the New Testament as an example of someone who openly admits his struggles with sin.

      I guess the questions that I have had in my spirit for several months are: Can we sin and still have a heart for God at the same time? Is our personal sin a reflection of our love for God? Is there a difference between sinning and idolatry? For the latter question, the answer is, yes! Now, we know that idolatry is also a sin, however, idolatry is in a category of her own; idolatry is indeed a higher level of sin.

      Our flesh is filled with sin; that is why Scripture encourages us not to walk in the flesh. (Galatians 5:16) Our soul, because of her need for restoration, is also filled with sin (Psalm 23:3). So we can say that we can sin at the Flesh Level and at the Soul Level.

      But when we sin with the sin of idolatry now our sin is taken to a higher level; it is no longer flesh, it is no longer at the soul level, it is now in a Spiritual Level. In John 4:23-24, Jesus tells us concerning worship:

23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” (NKJV)



To be continued…


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