November 3 – American Idols

Have you seen this, son of man?” he asked. “Is it nothing to the people of Judah that they commit these detestable sins, leading the whole nation into violence, thumbing their noses at me, and provoking my anger? (Ezekiel 8:17)

Read: Ezekiel 7:1-9:11, Hebrews 5:1-14, Psalm 105:1-15, Proverbs 26:28 

Relate: As I was reading the eighth chapter of Ezekiel I began to wonder what it would like if Ezekiel were alive today and God were showing him our sins rather than the ones of early exile Israel. As always I would much rather you read the entire daily scripture linked above than anything I write. Scripture has so much more to say to you than my humble stuttering words. But even if you normally don’t. I beg you to at least read Ezekiel 8 before continuing on, OK?

Then on November 3’rd, after one full year of the reign of Trump, the Spirit of the Lord took hold of me. I saw a figure that appeared to be like a man. He reached out and took me by the hair, he lifted me up and took me to the heart of America. There in the churches of God I saw that the large expensive buildings had become idols that made the Lord jealous. Suddenly, the glory of the Lord was all around me. The Lord said to me, “Son of man, look to the north.”

I turned and there I saw a man behind the pulpit. He spoke the words of God but the people worshiped that man rather than the one of whom he spoke. “Son of man, do you see the detestable thing these people do to drive me from my church? But come. I will show you even worse sins than these.”

He brought me to the office of the church and there before me I saw a locked door. He gave me a key and I opened that door into a dark room. I went into the room and saw detestable pictures and actions shining out from computer screens. Seventy leaders of the church were sitting behind these screens worshiping the images that bound them to the darkness. “Son of man, do you see what the leaders of my people do in the darkest hours? ‘The Lord doesn’t see.’ They say as they continue in their sin.”

Then the Lord took me into the homes where the women were worshiping their god of entertainment. These women were weeping of the latest divorce of their favorite actors. “Son of man, do you see the way these women worship with their time and hearts the gods of entertainment and distraction? Then they dare to say they have not the time to spend in prayer to me. But come, I will show you an even more detestable sin than this.”

Then the Lord took me out to the large sports stadium just outside the city. There he showed me thousands of men who turned their back on the oppressed to stand and worship a flag and the gods of might and strength it represents.  “Have you seen this, son of man?” he asked. “Is it nothing to the people of Judah that they commit these detestable sins, leading the whole nation into violence, thumbing their noses at me, and provoking my anger? Therefore, I will respond in fury. I will neither pity nor spare them. And though they cry for mercy, I will not listen.”

React: Would this be what God would show if He were giving Ezekiel a spiritual tour today? What if he wasn’t showing the prophet a people or a culture but rather the sins I have committed? What would that tour look like then? What about you? It is easy to point the finger at our or another’s culture but what about shining the light of truth in the mirror? How many ways have I… have we, created idols? In what ways we invest our time, our money, and our heart on other things more than on God?

Respond: 

Dear God,
Nothing is hidden from your sight. Sometimes that is a comforting truth, but at others it is terrifying. In the dark hours of my rebellion it is so easy to forget that You are still there with me, watching me, weeping over me. God forgive me for my idolatry. God forgive me community and my culture for our idolatry. Help me to live You just as passionately when I am alone as I profess to do in public. Help me to have the same integrity in closed rooms as I do in public forums. Let Your grace wash over me again… and let it change me from who I am into who You want me to be.
Amen

 

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10 thoughts on “November 3 – American Idols

  1. Powerful! 😮 I read Ezekiel 8 as you suggested, and the similarities between the biblical text and your narrative are both tragic and uncanny in their implications. Thanks again for sharing this – I will save this post for future reference/reflection.

  2. Thank you! I was considering writing a post about this very passage in Ezekiel. But then I read your post and wept. I was convicted of my own lack of passion for Father lately, distracted by other things. God, You are so gentle with us.

  3. Thank you! That was powerful, and definitely of God! I really sense here that God is getting us ready for something. He gave me a message today along these same lines.

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