You shall have no other gods before me.
“But my people have exchanged their Glory for worthless idols”, declares the Lord (Jeremiah 2:11). How could they? God had done so much for them. He had showed Himself Great and Glorious in their presence. He had been faithful, patient, loving. Yet His people had embraced idolatry of every form. Just a few verses later, God says, “They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns that cannot hold water” (Jeremiah 2:13). His beloved was looking elsewhere for satisfaction and sustenance and didn’t even realize that the hunt was futile. What a sad commentary on God’s chosen ones.
A closer inspection turns to introspection, making me wonder if somehow I am exchanging my Glory, my precious Savior, for idols of my own making or my own imagination. Do I rely on people in my life to do for me what only God can do? Do I hold positions where I seek satisfaction and security that only come from Him? Do I imagine my own power or control where, in reality, I hold none? Have I forsaken the Living Water for a cheap substitute that neither nourishes nor satisfies?
Idolatry today is as abhorrent to our Father as it was in Old Testament days. It may take different forms, but it is the same age-old substitute for the REAL THING! Today’s idols take the shape of alcohol, drugs, food, money, jobs, husbands, children, self, etc. We look to these things to bring us peace, give us hope, be our security, confidence and satisfaction.
In Isaiah 45:18, the Lord proclaims, “I am the Lord and there is no other.” May we forsake all other counterfeit gods, all idols that cannot hear, cannot see, cannot act, for the One who made us, who loves us, who supplies all our needs. Our Glory is all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving. We do not need any other.
For in you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light (Psalm 36:9).