Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Worship of Stone Statues - Malta

Malta will always be a place that is near and dear to my heart. I pray and hope that one day God will allow me to go back. I have made some good friends there. I see their hearts desire for the people to worship the one true God alone. My heart joins with theirs in praying this way.

These people are very religious but miss the relationship in Christ alone. They observe various feasts dedicated to patron saints. During these times they carry these huge beautifully carved statues of stone around of the saint celebrating. As they do this people bow down and worship this block of stone.

This breaks my heart but I can easily forget this and what I observed. I do not live there day in and day out. My friend who is a Christian, the minority, has to see this often and I know it breaks her heart. She asked me today for some Scripture on statues. They worship statues of stone, yet I may worship my children or my comfort. Both of these are wrong. Jesus alone deserves our worship. Nothing else. Yet so easily our hearts are drawn to devotion of other things.

In searching for some scripture for my friend I found this in Deuteronomy 24:23-24, "Be careful not to forget the covenant of the Lord your God that he made with you; do not make for yourselves an idol in the form of anything the Lord your God has forbidden. For the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God."

The people are being prepared for entering the promised land. God reminds them of the covenant relationship He has with them. He reminds them not to make for themselves an idol. Why? The text states because the Lord your God is a consuming fire, a jealous God.

God is jealous for us, it is He the Creator of the universe who knit each human being together in the secret place of their mother's womb. It is He the One who gave up His community of the Trinity in perfect fellowship to dress Himself in skin to walk with out sin in the flesh, to die brutally and with separation from God on the cross for sinners. It is He who because of His great love for us chose to redeem by exchanging places with us. His life for ours. It was He who because of His sacrifice and exchange of places gives us a right standing before God. He is amazing. He truly is the only One who deserves our full worship. It is He who is the One who has the right to be jealous for His Creation that He loves deeply and completely. 

So my prayer is that those who are caught up in idol worship whether it be of stone statues or of anything else that takes our eyes off of Christ alone be acquainted with the One who loves us fully and completely. The One who is jealous for us and who went amazingly wonderful and painful lengths to redeem us. May all eyes be fixed on Him and may He fill our hearts with a burning passion and desire for Him alone. May our hearts only have room to worship Him. May we have eyes to see and ears to hear His call to us.

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