“And how you turned away from idols to God, to serve the true and living God.” Ist Thessalonians 1:9 (b).
The Bible says the idol worship begins with man’s departure from the loving, living, and only one creator God. It is the result of the apostasy in people’s hearts toward the truth revealed to them. People’s imagination that God is not interested in their personal lives because God is up there in heaven and least bothered about the affairs of humans. The belief that God created the world and then left it alone because he is so high and separate from his creation. Deism holds the view that God does not intervene with the functioning of the natural world in any way, allowing it to run according to the laws of nature. However, the Bible reveals God’s transcendence and immanence (nearness) as his unique attributes.
Bible reveals even though God is so high and above and He is glorious more than our wildest imaginations, He still involved with the details of all the heavens, the earth, under the earth and our personal lives daily. The thought that God may not be interested in our lives led some even in the 2nd generation of Adam’s race to depart from Him and seek the intermediaries for help. From there onwards, people through the generations found intermediaries in heavenly bodies like sun, moon, and stars. They also found intermediaries for help in some prominent figures because of their seemingly ‘good standing’ with God. They thought it would help them to get favor from God by appealing to higher classes like heaven’s shining and helpful items or even in those people about whom they assumed had a good rapport with God during their earthly life.
Romans 1:21 says even though people knew the truth about God in their hearts, they did not honor Him as God. God’s invisible and powerful attributes were clearly observed through His works of marvelous creation. In addition they knew God internally from their inside. (1:19-20). Sadly, they did not have a thankful heart or honor toward the one true living God. As a result, their heart was darkened and became foolish in their speculations. The result was idol worship according to Romans 1:23. It says there, “they exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and birds, animals and so forth.” Verse 25 says, they exchanged the truth of God for a lie. This resulted in worshipping and serving the creature rather than the creator.
Now some innocent people got into this false belief system because they are born into the families or communities of those who exchanged the truth of God for a lie. You see such people may never have questioned the cultural system they were in. They also became part of the lie system without much thoughts behind it. Average person has a tendency to go with the flow.
Bible says in 1st Thessalonians 1:9 this. Listen carefully. It says to remember, “how you turned to God from idols to serve a living and true God.” It illustrates how did the transfer happen in their lives in the preceding verses. The Gospel, the good news, came to them not just in its words but also in its power. This meant they heard the preaching of the Gospel, (vs.5a) which is the truth of God and the Holy Spirit of God convicted them(5b). As a result, many people in the city of Thessalonica turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God.
Beloved, this is the only way to turn from idols to true and living God who is the creator of all. The Gospel informs God loves you and He is intimately involved with your personal life. God cares about you and your future. As a result, He sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, to die in your place to pay for all of your sins so that you can come closer to God and enjoy loving fellowship with Him in and through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus.
Got a moment for today’s prayer? “Father in heaven, I believe in the good news – the Gospel- that You loves and cares about me and you are intimately involve in my personal lives. Although You are transcendent you are immanent as well. I believe as a proof of Your love, You sent Jesus Christ for my sin. Jesus carried my sins on His body and paid a ransom for all of my sins. Now I can have fellowship and friendship with you when I accept Jesus as my savior and Lord. I accept Jesus and believer in Him. Please save me, bless me and grant me your promised eternal life with you in heaven. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.”