Take a moment and consider: What is the most consuming thought in your life right now?

“They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.” (Jonah 2:8 KJV)

“Those who regard worthless idols Forsake their own Mercy.” (Jonah 2:8 NKJV)

First, let’s discuss the definition of an “idol.”

The KJV uses the word “vanities” and Strong’s Concordance defines that as: “vapour, breath”

The NKJV uses the word “idols,” which Smith’s Bible Dictionary defines as: An image or anything used as an object of worship in place of the true God.

Easton’s Bible Dictionary defines the word “idol” as: “nothingness;” “vanity”

Looking at all these definitions, it really all boils down to the same thing. Worshiping an idol is a waste of time. Although we often think of an idol as a statue or image (which it can be), the action that makes it an idol is what is displeasing to God. That “worship” that we give the image is the problem. It’s our thoughts, our actions, our feelings that get captured and consumed, and those thoughts, actions, and feelings can either be expended on God or on something else. Putting more mental energy into anything other than worshiping GOD is an idol, and will be like a vapor…here for a second, then gone.

God is forever…HE is eternal (past, present, and future).

“… We give You thanks, O Lord God Almighty, The One who is and who was and who is to come, Because You have taken Your great power and reigned.” {Revelation 11:17 NKJV}

In our verse, Jonah is warning others, but I’m debating as to whether he is warning them because of his own experience of making his feelings about the people of Nineveh an idol. (He really didn’t like them!)

Have you ever just held on to a feeling of hate because you didn’t think a person deserved forgiveness? Could that feeling be an idol? (I say…yes)

Jonah was put into a place of submission (the belly of a great fish) before he was finally going to listen to what God had told him to do.(Read the whole story) Jonah was guilty of worshiping the “I” idol.

Has anyone else been guilty of worshiping the “I” idol?

We choose to idolize so many things, instead of God! I have personally been guilty of not even seeing that I am making a thing or a person (even if it’s my own self) an idol.

I want to be happy. I want to have a companion. I needed this or that…me, me, me. I think I know what’s best for me. What I want comes before what God wants for me.

I have failed to be obedient to the more important instruction of putting GOD first, and then HIS calling. I have chosen to be disobedient. Yes, I am guilty of worshiping the “I” idol. That is not an easy confession to make.

But…I’m learning…I’m growing…right along with all of you. I know I have to put God’s purpose before my own.

Now that I see that I have made myself an idol, I can begin (have already begun) to lose myself to HIM. I think that’s what Jonah is saying in verse 9: “But I will sacrifice to You With the voice of thanksgiving; I will pay what I have vowed…”

God had to take extreme action to get Jonah’s attention and HE has had to take extreme action to get my attention, also. However, HE is so gracious! He is so patient with us and I no longer want to turn my back on the GOD who is worthy of all praise:

“I will declare Your name to My brethren; In the midst of the assembly I will praise You.” {Psalm 22:22 NKJV}

“…Praise our God, all you His servants and those who fear Him, both small and great!”” {Revelation 19:5 NKJV}

Can you see how what Jonah went through is Still Real for us today?

Do you know that you can overcome any idol because we are…

Gaining strength though our fellowship.

“That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.” {1 John 1:3 KJV}


Photo by Channen M. Sallee



10 thoughts on “Worshiping the “I” idol…

  1. Very thought provoking. To worship is to follow and we follow mentally. I would never have considered an emotion, such as hated, to be idolized but if one follows the emotion rather than controlling it then the emotion is idolized I guess. That falls in line with the worship of selfishness, the “I” idol. I suppose we all follow that idol from time to time, as Emissary pointed out, when we do not follow the path GOD has laid out for us. Very thought provoking to me. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

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