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Heart Problem

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts
The Truth Network Radio
January 17, 2023 7:00 pm

Heart Problem

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts

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January 17, 2023 7:00 pm

“Do you see it, brother Tim?” My friend, a Ghanaian pastor, flashed his torchlight on a carved object leaning against a mud hut. Quietly he said, “That is the village idol.” Each Tuesday evening, Pastor Sam traveled into the bush to share the Bible in this remote village.

In the book of Ezekiel, we see how idolatry plagued the people of Judah. When Jerusalem’s leaders came to see the prophet Ezekiel, God told him, “These men have set up idols in their hearts” (14:3). God wasn’t merely warning them against idols carved of wood and stone. He was showing them that idolatry is a problem of the heart. We all struggle with it.

Bible teacher Alistair Begg describes an idol as “anything other than God that we regard as essential to our peace, our self-image, our contentment, or our acceptability.” Even things that have the appearance of being noble can become idols to us. When we seek comfort or self-worth from anything other than the living God, we commit idolatry.

“Repent!” God said. “Turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices!” (v. 6). Israel proved incapable of doing this. Thankfully, God had the solution. Looking forward to the coming of Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit, He promised, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you” (36:26). We can’t do this alone.

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Welcome to today's encouragement from Our Daily Bread.

Our reading, titled Heart Problem, was written by Tim Gustafson. Do you see it, Brother Tim? My friend, a Ghanaian pastor, flashed his torchlight on a carved object leaning against a mud hut. Quietly he said, That is the village idol.

Each Tuesday evening, Pastor Sam traveled into the bush to share the Bible in this remote village. In the book of Ezekiel, we see how idolatry plagued the people of Judah. When Jerusalem's leaders came to see the prophet Ezekiel, God told him, These men have set up idols in their hearts. God wasn't merely warning them against idols carved of wood and stone. He was showing them that idolatry is a problem of the heart.

We all struggle with it. Bible teacher Alistair Begg describes an idol as anything other than God that we regard as essential to our peace, our self-image, our contentment, or our acceptability. Even things that have the appearance of being noble can become idols to us. When we seek comfort or self-worth from anything other than the living God, we commit idolatry. Repent, God said. Turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices.

Israel proved incapable of doing this. Thankfully, God had the solution. Looking forward to the coming of Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit, He promised, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you.

We can't do this alone. Today's Our Daily Bread devotional scripture reading is from Ezekiel chapter 14 verses 1 through 8. Some of the elders of Israel came to me and sat down in front of me. Then the word of the Lord came to me, Son of man, these men have set up idols in their hearts and put wicked stumbling blocks before their faces.

Should I let them inquire of me at all? Therefore, speak to them and tell them, This is what the sovereign Lord says. When any of the Israelites set up idols in their hearts and put a wicked stumbling block before their faces and then go to a prophet, I the Lord will answer them myself in keeping with their great idolatry. I will do this to recapture the hearts of the people of Israel who have all deserted me for their idols. Therefore, say to the people of Israel, This is what the sovereign Lord says, Repent, turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices. When any of the Israelites or any foreigner residing in Israel separate themselves from me and set up idols in their hearts and put a wicked stumbling block before their faces and then go to a prophet to inquire of me, I the Lord will answer them myself. I will set my face against them and make them an example and a byword. I will remove them from my people. Then you will know that I am the Lord. Let's pray. Father, please show us the idols that are in our hearts. Help us to destroy them and turn to you and live and be content in your love. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-22 11:10:33 / 2023-01-22 11:12:13 / 2

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