Is idolatry really the root of all sin?

When it comes to the Ten Commandments, everyone falls short. (See Romans 3:23) It’s hard to find someone who won’t admit that they’ve lied, stolen, lusted or coveted. On the other hand, it’s difficult to find a single person who admits to forging an idol and worshipping it.

So, has humanity really gotten out of the reach of Israel’s hideous but all-too-common sin?

We have to take a look at what an idol really is before we can judge whether or not they plague North America today. God created both cows and gold, and therefore has nothing against either of them. What, then, was the sin? Mankind were taking these objects and actually replacing the Creator of the universe with these created objects. The praise and loyalty owed to God was taken by these images.

And so these idols begin to be exposed in our day and age. Going through school, a Christian student should be able to spot these ever more clearly. Top grades? University? Good paying job? How about being liked by others? Notice that none of these are bad in themselves, but are amoral. It is when we replace God with them that they become detestable idols.

I’ll leave you with the thought: What’s my golden calf? When you think of your greatest wish being fulfilled, does it involve people, or materials? Or do you “seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God” (Colossians 3:1 ESV)?