God doesn’t always fit in the box you create for him

We’ve been considering commandment No. 2, where God said, “You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them …”

In many ways, idolatry is a subtle attempt to control God. It is like we think we can isolate God and place Him in a box. If I can just keep God in a tiny little box, I can make sure He stays in His place and out of my way.

For instance, a lot of people want to leave God at church. They attempt to compartmentalize their lives. God is a part of their Sunday experience, and then they attempt to leave Him behind until the next Sunday rolls around.

This is one of the things that leads to claims that Christians are hypocritical. These are the people who live one way on Sunday and a different way through the week. We think we can just kind of put God on the shelf and come back for Him whenever it is more convenient.

Idol worship is sometimes an attempt to restrict God’s presence or limit God’s power. People are notorious for trying to whittle God down to a manageable size. If I’ve got God in a statue, in a little box or an idea (like saying, God’s only for church or only a part of our lives on Sunday), then it’s less imposing and less threatening.

We act like God’s not everywhere and He can’t do everything. We attempt to make God a little more convenient and a little more manageable that way.

In Genesis 1:27, God said, “Let us make man in our image.” Mankind has been trying to return the favor for generations by trying to make God in our image. We want to make God like us.

I often hear people say something like, “My idea of God is this…” We customize everything else in life. Now, people try to create the God they desire rather than getting to know and understand the God of the Bible.

We need to get to know God and learn about who He is through His Word. We can get to know what God is like by looking to the example of Jesus Christ.

People often try to shape God by their own standards, by their own personalities and by their own desires. We’ve discovered it is easier to change our image of God rather than allow God to change us.

You may read Steve Greene’s blog at pastorgreene.wordpress.com or you can email him at [email protected].