1 Corinthians 10:14: Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.
In the last message we looked at 1 Corinthians 10:13. We learned in that passage, 4 truths about how we relate to sin. We learned that when we sin,
1. we can never say that we were taken by surprise and that is why we sinned.
2. We can never say that we could not help but sin.
3. We can never say we did not have a choice but to sin.
4. Lastly, we can never say we could not resist the temptation
In summary, we learned that there is no excuse to sin. When you sin, it is because you wanted to sin and therefore deserve God’s wrath if you are an unbeliever, or God’s discipline, if you are a believer. So the only correct response to sin is to confess it, acknowledge God’s right to punish you for it, ask for mercy and turn away from it. Making excuses for sin is the last thing you want to do.
Now let’s look at our passage 1 Corinthians 10:14
In verse 14, Paul concludes the discussion he started since verse 1. From verse 1 to 13 of this chapter, Paul reminded us how Israel sinned against God in the desert, and how they were punished for that, and how that serves as a warning to us not to sin, and lastly that there is no excuse to sin. He then concludes this section by saying, Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.
Paul says that in light of what he said regarding sin and judgement, he now commands you to flee from idolatry. What is idolatry? Idolatry is trusting, serving or giving worship to something that is not God.
Let us look at some practical examples of how idolatry appears in our lives:
• If you disobey God’s commandments in any way for any reason, you put yourself above God. This is called idolatry of self. You have decided that God no longer has authority over your life and you will exercise your own authority.
⁃ God says homosexuality is a sin, you say it is not a sin if it is based on love
⁃ God says abortion is a sin from conception, you say you have a right to your own body and you will commit abortion
⁃ God says have nothing to do with the dead, you say they are my ancestors and I will continue to interact with them
⁃ God says obey the government, you say you will not do that because you don’t like or trust the current government
⁃ God says submit to your husband, you say only if the husband deserves it
⁃ God says love your wife, you say my wife does not deserve it
⁃ God says obey your parents, you say my parents are old fashioned
These are just some examples of how we turn ourselves into gods and reject the authority of the one true God.
• If there’s is something in your life that is so important to you, that you can even disobey God for it, then whatever that thing is, that is an idol in your life. Let’s look at some examples
⁃ If your life is more important than God, then your life is an idol. You will rather disobey God than loose your life
⁃ If your family is more important than God, then your family is your idol. You will do anything for your family even if it means disobeying God
⁃ If your husband or wife or child is more important than God, then they are your idol. You will do anything for them even if it means disobeying God
⁃ If your work is more important than God, then your work is your idol. You will rather disobey God than lose your job.
⁃ If health, wealth and prosperity is your idol, then you will pursue them even if it means disobeying God
These are just some examples. The danger with idolatry is that most of us can have idols in our lives that we are not even aware of. It is best that we seriously identify these idols in our lives and repent from them. Remember that Jesus deserves our trust, service and worship above all else. Therefore flee from your idols and put your trust only in Jesus. Only the word of God can reveal idols in your life.