“The word of the Lord came to me: ‘Son of man, these men have taken their idols into their hearts, and set the stumbling block of their iniquity before their faces. Should I indeed let myself be consulted by them? Therefore speak to them and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: Any one of the house of Israel who takes his idols into his heart and sets the stumbling block of his iniquity before his face, and yet comes to the prophet, I the Lord will answer him as he comes with the multitude of his idols, that I may lay hold of the hearts of the house of Israel, who are all estranged from me through their idols.
“’Therefore say to the house of Israel, Thus says the Lord God: Repent and turn away from your idols, and turn away your faces from all your abominations. For any one of the house of Israel, or of the strangers who sojourn in Israel, who separates himself from me, taking his idols into his heart and putting the stumbling block of his iniquity before his face, and yet comes to a prophet to consult me through him, I the Lord will answer him myself. And I will set my face against that man; I will make him a sign and a byword and cut him off from the midst of my people, and you shall know that I am the Lord.” Ezekiel 14:2-8
“I am the Lord; that is my name;
my glory I give to no other,
nor my praise to carved idols.” Isaiah 42:8
We may think we can coddle idols in our hearts, and conceal our iniquities before our faces, and still seek and hear from the Lord, but He says not so. No mixed affections. We will hear from Him, but it will be a call to repent from dual allegiances. He see us clearly, even those secrets we think we hide. He knows well what lurks in our hearts, and wants to lay hold of them. Though He is invisible, the omniscient and all-seeing holds us before His unobstructed face, and promises to set that face against us unless we come clean. (Jeremiah 17:9; John 2:25)
What things have vied for our heart’s affection and allegiance over the Lord, and won? To what habits and trinkets are we beholden, devastated if we cannot get our fix? Do we worship at the altar of connectivity, comfort and safety, financial security, or approval so often that we do not recognize our addiction as idolatry?
When the Holy Spirit exposes our idols, are we quick to name and renounce them, and repent? Do we ruthlessly put them away, turn them off, find accountability, and let Jesus set us free from their tyranny? We cannot serve two masters. (Matthew 6:24; John 8:34-36; 16:8)
Fall on God’s grace! His mercy responds to our repentance, by which He steals and seals our hearts.
“Oh, to grace how great a debtor
daily I’m constrained to be!
Let thy goodness, like a fetter,
bind my wandering heart to thee:
prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
prone to leave the God I love;
here’s my heart, O take and seal it;
seal it for thy courts above.” ~Robert Robertson (1758)
Lord, take hold of my heart and its every longing and love. Cause it to pulse for You alone.