And one cried to another and said: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!" (Isaiah 6:3).
I’m sorry! But if I see one more magazine at the check-out counter with a photo of Kim Kardasian on the front cover, I’m going to regurgitate!
Oh, there is no denying she has a beautiful face and figure; however, the incessant promulgation of celebrity icons is getting boring. One can’t turn left or right, nor switch the television channels without having some new or old idol thrown into your face. Be it Kim, Brittany, Johnny or (even dead ones like) Michael, Americans especially are caught up with their icons like no other society on earth. Not just movies stars, mind you, but other idols like that new Chevy pick-up truck and jazzy sports car, the latest telephone-combo Internet phone, as well as nouvelle foods, haute fashions and raw political power fusions.
Now, Kim and the rest of these glamour icons are probably very nice people; but the issue is not about being nice, it’s about humanity being able to distinguish between what is important in our lives and what is sheer, unabashed idolatry.
Idolatry has been with us from the very beginning, the biggest and oldest example being the Golden Calf that was erected soon after God had freed “His” people from the clutches of Egyptian rule. The irony of the idolatry mindset is that even after we witness and experience that one entity that freed us from bondage, we go right back and begin to bow before the culprits that enslaved us to begin with. Masochists? Gluttons for punishment? Or, are these idols so appealing and nurturing to who we are and who want to be like? Yup! We want to be just like God, and receive the kudos that were never intended for His creation but He and He alone! It all started with Eve, who fell for the deception of knowing all things, all wisdom and an omniscient nature. And all of this to mostly indulge and please self?
Yet, there is an inner weakness and lack of self-esteem that languishes within our hearts and souls that finds a certain degree of redemption by virtue of someone else’s beauty, wisdom and strength, and by bowing or praising that entity we lift up ourselves through vicarious emulation.
What many fail to realize is that by not giving all of our praise, honor and glory to God instead of mortal beings or tangible items, the net result garners nothing but emptiness. Instead, it is when we give glory to God above anything or anyone else is when we see the true purpose in every aspect of our lives.
God has told us that in the end, through our faithfulness in Him, the ultimate reward will be not only salvation and spending eternity with him as co-administrators of His kingdom, but that we will also share in His Glory!
When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory, (Colossians 3:4)
For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? (1 Thessalonians 2:19)
He called you to this through our gospel, that you might share in the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ, (2 Thessalonians 2:14)
What is that Glory? Paul didn’t go into any specific details other than telling us, But as it is written, eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him, (1 Corinthians 2:14).
But yet, those who lack faith in God and instead glorify others (or themselves), shun the promises of a future for temporal gratification. Sadly, among many professing Christians, they lift others to god-like status.
Sadly, this idolatry is not only existent in a secular world; Christians have their American idols as well. Most of these professing Christians lack faith in God and instead glorify others (for themselves), they shun the promises of a glorious future for temporal gratification.
Sadly, among many professing Christians, they lift others to god-like status; such as that charismatic preacher or pastor, the latest Christian rock singer, newly emerging authors and novice talk show hosts and others with esoteric data concerning how the devil is seducing the flock through emerging evidence of extra-terrestrials and other conspiratorial schema, or those with a new slant on the Gospel, writing or preaching about so-called prophecies gleaned from connecting CNN news items to Old Testament prophecies that have already been fulfilled by Jesus Christ
Oh, many of them love Jesus and are well-intended. But, are we truly fulfilling the command Jesus gave us as He ascended to Heaven, departing because the Holy Spirit could not come down to help His disciples to fulfill that mission (Acts1:4-7) until He left for Heaven?
Now, it’s not fair to single out just a few people in this article, but those we focus on are emblematic of the problem that idolatry can have on the public, especially the one it has on self-avowed Christians. For example, I recently met a young lady on Facebook who wanted to ‘buddy connect’ with me and claimed she was a Christian; everything on her profile page alluded so, therefore I accepted her request.
Shortly thereafter, she asked me what I thought about Kim Clement, a popular television evangelist who is known for making many predictions. I told her that I really don’t follow any of today’s televangelists, especially those who profess they have the unique ability to predict the future, which I feel is not biblically-based.
She then asked me if I had ever attended any of Clement's rallies and I said no I had not. No sooner had I finished typing my answer and the young lady went ballistics. She began using the most putrid and foul language I had even seen on FaceBook, calling me a heretic and telling me that I was not saved unless I had been exposed to Clement’s amazing messages and the out-pouring of the Holy Spirit at one of his rallies. I was stunned! I could not believe what just happened!
Now this may appear to be an aberrational experience, and that for the most part, people like her are far and few in between the normal Christians who genuinely seek wisdom from and about Christ! However, I will argue that assumption after having attended many such revival rallies, as well as (in my formal life) having attended some pretty weird rock concerts many years ago. Trust me; that frenetic frenzy most often experienced at rock concerts sometimes cannot be distinguishable from the same Christian assemblies I have attended in the past. And many Christians call this style of worship as giving glory to God!
Now, Kim Kardasian, Kim Clement, Benny Hinn and the rest of the most well-known "Christian" icons are probably very nice people. But the issue is not about being nice, it’s about distinguishing between giving the appropriate glory to God and idolizing human beings for whatever appearance of greatness they may appear to possess.
Many Christians sincerely do want to follow and serve Christ and many of them have turned to Internet social networks for answers, as well as forums (the pulpits of today) to either learn more about God and or contribute their views. Gaining the needed wisdom is not theological rocket science. God has already provided everything we need to know to accomplish our respective missions.
One of those things He has provided includes a complete understanding as to what the word GLORY truly means. At, first (as a novice disciple) every time I used to see that we should always give glory to God I would begin to think that He is an egotistical God, one who focuses more on our obeisance rather taking care of people’s needs. After discovering that He not only provides all we need, He went above and beyond the call of duty, which was best exemplified by He coming down in the form of the flesh man Jesus and offering His life in order for each one of us to have eternal life. That makes no sense at all, but it made me realize that God more than anything else in existence not only should receive Glory, it should be our most important focus in life on a daily basis.
Alas! Instead we focus on our contribution, our endeavors, our own strength and talent, never realizing had it not been for Him, we would not possess any these.
His message to His children has been made clear from the beginning and He has repeated this over and over again and again. He has assured us of faithfulness, salvation, and any other thing we need to get through this journey we call life. He isn’t a burdensome task master, asking us to do anything different than any other mere mortal. All He wants is for us to acknowledge who He is and what He does. Glory should be nothing else for us but to give Him credit for who He is and what He has done through Jesus Christ!
But No! Instead we go about praising others, lifting others to pedestals, as well as ourselves, above God!
My dear friend and mentor, A.W. Tozer, once again tells us the difference between man’s religion and recognizing who God is and acknowledging through praise what He has done:
“If you want to pray strategically, in a way which would please God, pray that God might raise up men who would see the beauty of the Lord our God and would begin to preach it and hold it out to people, instead of offering peace of mind, deliverance from cigarettes, a better job and nicer cottage....
What good is all our busy religion if God isn't in it? What good is it if we've lost majesty, reverence, worship--an awareness of the divine? What good is it if we've lost a sense of the Presence and the ability to retreat within our own hearts and meet God in the garden?
If we've lost that, why build another church? Why make more converts to an effete Christianity? Why bring people to follow after a Savior so far off that He doesn't own them?
We need to improve the quality of our Christianity, and we never will until we raise our concept of God back to that held by apostle, sage, prophet, saint and reformer.
When we put God back where He belongs, we will instinctively and automatically move up again; the whole spiral of our religious direction will be upward. The Attributes of God, pp 194-195, by A.W. Tozer.”
To become more familiar with the word glory, click this link below and read them, slowly and carefully, and begin to focus on Him rather than those other entities that provide us no eternal GLORY whatsoever!
To access the author’s two books, please click on The End Times Passover and Why Christians Will Suffer Great Tribulation To access the author’s blogs and web sites, please click on Joe Ortiz.