Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could be theirs. (Jonah 2:8, NIV84)
When we decide to cling to “worthless idols” instead of following God-given directives, our lives can be shortened or destroyed. A self-driven life forfeits what possibly could have been a great future for the rubble of temporary pleasures. And idols can present themselves in many forms.
This principle is demonstrated over and over in the Bible:
- Cain was jealous of Abel, killing him in anger to appease his own emotions, and was thus a wanderer for the rest of his life (Genesis 4:1–12).
- Esau traded his birthright for a bowl of stew (Genesis 25:27–34).
- Achan and his entire family were stoned to death because Achan disobeyed the Lord by taking and hiding silver in his tent when the Hebrews attacked the city of Ai as they entered the Promised Land (Joshua 7).
- Absalom shortened his life by rebelling against his father, King David (2 Samuel 15–18).
- King Belshazzar, the last king of Babylon, had an untimely end to his kingdom (Daniel 5:23–28).
- Ananias and Sapphira wanted the immediate praise of their peers and so they lied about an extravagant offering to the New Testament church. As a result, they were struck dead (Acts 5:1–11).
Today, we do the very same thing—trading our futures and forfeiting the grace of God, both in this world and the world to come—by devoting our lives to money, pleasure, power, praise, and position. However, there is nothing in this world, no idol worth clinging to or serving, that is worth sacrificing our present and eternal future.
We make a difference in this world and our lives echo into eternity when we stay focused on God and his desires for us. We are empowered by the Holy Spirit to make the right choices and fulfill God’s plans.
Today, ask yourself:
Are there any idols in my life that are causing me to forfeit God’s grace in my life? Ask God to eliminate these idols and fill you with his desires as given to you in his Word.