Friday, February 4, 2011

Contemplate This: Idolatry

        "The biblical concept of idolatry is an extremely sophisticated idea, integrating intellectual, psychological, social, cultural and spiritual categories. There are personal idols, such as romantic love and family, or money, power, and achievement; or access to particular social circles; or the emotional dependence of others on you; or health, fitness, and physical beauty. Many look to these things for the hope, meaning and fulfillment that only God can provide.

        There are cultural idols, such as military power, technological progress, and economic prosperity. The idols of traditional societies include family, hard work, duty, and moral virtue, while those of Western cultures are individual freedom, self-discovery, personal affluence, and fulfillment. All these good things can and do take on disproportionate size and power within a society. They promise us safety, peace and happiness if only we base our lives on them."

                                      - Tim Keller, Counterfeit Gods (Dutton, 2009), xix.