We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. Little children, guard yourselves from idols.. 1 John 5:19-21
When you look at the fruits of your life, at the choices you make, the thoughts that you ALLOW yourself to think, do you show yourself as being on guard against the schemes of the devil?
It's a serious question. Reality is in the Spiritual world it isn't in this physical world of pain and pleasure. It isn't bound up in inventions or achievements. It's not found in accolades or in shame other than in regards to obedience to God's Word or not.
What you've done in your body in regards to the Scriptures will matter.
You either are on your Guard, standing your ground, or you go with the flow and lose ground.
You are charged with giving your all in this life in your obedience to God. Death isn't to be a deterrent to even that. Read in Daniel about his 3 friends who defied King Nebuchadnezzar and got tossed into a firey furnace. Obedience will inevitably cost you something. Obedience cost Jesus to the point of death.
Look at what John is saying in this passage. Look at the State of Your Union with the Creator God to whom you claim allegiance. To the One to whom you say is your Savior and Lord.
Are you guarding your heart?
Are you guarding your mind?
Have you slowly given ground to the enemy? If you are in Christ Jesus yes indeed you too have an enemy. Satan will never concede to God's rule nor will he ever allow any who call on Jesus name to live a life of peace unless it's because he's already deceived them to the point of inactivity in Christ.
Guard yourselves from idols. Think really hard about that. If we truly believe that the Scriptures are timeless and applicable to life today, then indeed idolatry exists even today.
To be honest God's still weeding out idols from me.
If you are bold enough, ask God to reveal what idols exist in your life.
Daniel's friends refused even for a second to bow even one time to King Nebuchadnezzar's idol. They didn't even have a single second thought about obedience to God.
You can't look at your television, a movie, a YouTube video, or your phone or hear it on your radio and not find idolatry. Satan's had thousands of years to perfect seducing people into idolatry.
You weaken your faith in God by allowing idolatry into your life. To say or believe anything else is you being deceived. Scripture is clear on it, so to sit or stand there and say "Not me!" or "Don't know what you are talking about!"...means you don't understand the Word of God.
Anything in this life we live can become an idol. An idol is anything that is receiving the glory and adoration that belongs to God. Sports, movies, political figures, celebrities, even hobbies and yes even family and family activities can be idols. Look at the people Jesus found and the excuses given for not taking up their own cross to follow Christ. Your argument isn't with me, you are up against the Word of God.
In moving to our new hometown, we've had to come face to face with ourselves. At the very least I have. I have been getting an education on many things in my life. I have had my priorities stripped in order to replace them in accordance with the Will of God, my sanctification. The reason for moving in the first place. I have been shown just how out of order my priorities have been. I have had to let go of some things and change.
I read the news not to be enlightened by worldly affairs, but to see the state of mankind. To look for evidence that fits the Scriptures in regards to the return of Jesus Christ. I look at the world and see a deluge of idolatry from the human body to the arrogance of people in forcing non-believers into submission to worldly ideas. Guess what? No surprise all that was foretold in the Bible. If we believe in any part of the Bible we are supposed to believe all of it.
"All Scripture is inspired by God and beneficial for teaching, for rebuke, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man or woman of God may be fully capable, equipped for every good work." 2 Timothy 3:16-17 NASB
So in that, do you even know what the full armor of God is?
Do you have an understanding of the truth that in this life we would have afflictions?
Do you have an understanding that in Christ is our hope?
Do you only think about God on Sunday and that only briefly?
Are your thoughts consumed by the world and not in ways to please the Savior of your life?
Have you taken Jesus off the Throne of your heart? Only 1 can occupy that Throne.
I still have 2 weeks to go before beginning a full-time life in my new hometown.
God's still weeding out idols from my life. Sports had been one of mine. Science fiction has been an idol to me. Movies have been. My hobbies can consume me to the point of being one because of the reasons for me doing them. It's why I will not be setting up my "lab" when we get settled in. My room will start out life as a study. My priorities in there will be God first. To be honest even food was an idol to me. It caused me health problems and I didn't care. I have lost nearly 60 lbs since April 2021. It's been difficult to say the least. I cannot allow even food to have mastery over me. I don't want my hobbies to have mastery over me. I don't want my job to have mastery over me. I only want my life to reflect obedience to my Savior and Lord, Jesus Christ. I have to be on my guard.
"Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. So resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brothers and sisters who are in the world. After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. To Him be dominion forever and ever. Amen." 1 Peter 5:8-11 NASB
If you aren't sober, if you aren't on the alert, if you let your guard slip, you will be subject to attack, from the soft and subtle to the overt from the enemy of God.