The Second Commandment - Weekly Devotional
This week's focus: Ten Commandments
(this is the second in our series on the 10 Commandments)
2. Have no idols
While the first commandment deals with God being foremost at the center of our lives, the second addresses the manner by which He is to receive our attention and affection.
God hates idolatry in any form (Deuteronomy 6:14–15; 32:21; Jeremiah 2:5; Leviticus 26:1). It steals the attention and honor that belong only to God (Deuteronomy 6:5; Luke 10:27). In many nations today, carved gods and goddesses are still an obvious violation of this commandment. However, the sin of idolatry is ultimately a sin of the heart. An idol is anything we depend upon to meet the deep needs of the heart—love, security, worth, or significance. When we seek to find identity and security in something besides God, we have made it an idol. John Calvin said, “The human heart is an idol factory.” We often search for peace or identity through relationships, substances, money, or entertainment. Addictions are forms of idolatry, as are a host of otherworldly enticements that cannot ultimately satisfy. When we give ourselves to the pursuit of manmade gods, we are breaking the second commandment.
Even good things can become idols if we are not careful. Ministry, hobbies, charity work, politics, or family can usurp the rightful place only God should hold in our lives. When we emotionally rely on anything other than our relationship with Him to validate us, we are breaking the second commandment.
We must give the Holy Spirit free rein to smash any idols our hearts have erected. When we allow Him to remove anything that has established itself as an idol, we can then be filled with His joy and peace.
adapted from Got Questions
Exodus 20:4-6 (ESV)
"You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments."
- Lord, we have transgressed Your law by creating imaginary gods after our own likeness, and by living lives in service to them. We have created gods out of possessions, wealth, the outdoors, hobbies, passions & talents, family members, friends, preferences, longings and goals, and all kinds of other things. We have treated these good things as ultimate; instead of using them to bring You glory. We have placed these idols above the true and living God. Our lives have taken their shape out of reverence for these false gods. By the power of our King Jesus, release us from the bondage that we have created to these idols. Forgive us for our waywardness and cause us to walk in uprightness before You.
- We're honored to partner with our friend Kirk Cameron, for his limited engagement American Campfire Revival Tour. Our prayer is that these in-person events will be a source of light and life to you and your family and that as a result, the fires of revival will so burn within our hearts that as the eyes of others are upon us, they will see Him. Tickets are free, but you must RSVP. See if we'll be in your area and plan to join us!
We want to see God honored in America, and we pray for an unprecedented spiritual awakening.
This devotion was produced in partnership with Every Home for Christ.
This ministry is made possible by the generous support of friends like you.