The Folly of Idolatry

The Bible often mocks the futility of idolatry. Consider the following:

Their idols are silver and gold,
The work of man’s hands.
They have mouths, but they cannot speak;
They have eyes, but they cannot see;
They have ears, but they cannot hear;
They have noses, but they cannot smell;
They have hands, but they cannot feel;
They have feet, but they cannot walk;
They cannot make a sound with their throat. (Psalm 115:4-7)

We know how foolish it is to take a hunk of wood, cut it in half, and roast our meat over the fire with the one half, while making graven image to worship with the other half (see Isaiah 44:16-17).

We may mock. We may laugh. We may think that we are better than they, because we see the folly of it all. And yet, we may very well be blind to our own idolatry as well. The Bible says that greed and covetousness are idolatry. Any time that you have a desire to possess wealth only for yourself, you are making idols as well. Any time that you want something that you don’t have, you are making idols in your heart.

John Calvin was right on when he said, “The human heart is a factory of idols” (Institutes of the Christian Religion I:XI.8). We make plenty of idols for ourselves. We just don’t see its folly.

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