When God competes with His own blessings

By Dave Henning / June 21, 2013

While Chapter 6 of Pastor Kyle Idleman’s book Gods at War specifically deals with the god of sex, his comments are pertinent to all of God’s pleasurable blessings.  At the beginning of the chapter, the author astutely describes how our sinful nature changes the impact of God’s gifts: ” . . . isn’t it amazing how some of the richest and most beautiful gifts from God are often the same gifts that are twisted into hideous and destructive idols?”

Although all God’s gifts point us back to Him, in reality that’s not what often happens, as Pastor Idleman states: “But all too easily God’s gifts to us end up being his greatest competition.”  That happens when the gift becomes more important than the Giver- when our focus is on the beauty of the gift itself rather than on the love that brought the gift about.  Sex, food, and other forms of pleasure become ends in themselves, precipitating a dangerous downward spiral.  The author concisely describes the result: “They (God’s gifts) become gods, and the gods become tyrants, and the tyrants become slave masters.”  That downward spiral may result in obsession- an idolatry word.  God’s presence fades.

As Pastor Idleman notes in the next part of the chapter, when something good becomes a god, the inherent pleasure it brings dies in the process.  Jesus is our only satisfaction!

Today’s question: What gifts in your life have become more important than the Giver?  What helps you refocus?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “The pleasure paradox”


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Dave Henning

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