I have begun reading A. W. Tozer's book Knowledge of the Holy. His sobering point is that when the Church has a low view of God, it will diminish their effectiveness and lead to idolatry.
How can this be you say? I am an enlightened Christian in modern country. Not like those Haitians that practice ancient idolatry in their voodoo culture where they directly worship images and man-made objects. Not like the people of Thessalonica that Paul wrote about in
1 Thessalonians 1:9, "For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God..." I've never worshipped an idol!
Tozer suggests we may be terribly mistaken. Even Revelation speaks of man continuing to reject God even in the end by not giving up "worshiping demons and idols of gold and sliver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk." (Rev. 9:20).
The reality is when we try to put God in our own image, we are practicing idolatry. When we try to explain God in human terms and suggest that God is like us, it is idolatry. A low view of God leads Christians and churches to embrace cultural narratives rather than stay true to the holy scriptures. The idea that God would not punish a "good" person or that Jesus was like us is profoundly false. Jesus became human, yes. But he was nothing like us. He, like his Father, was perfect and holy and worthy of our eternal worship.
As Paul described to the Thessalonian believers, we should worship the LIVING and TRUE God. Not the god that makes us comfortable or feel good about ourselves but the true God that is Holy and Perfect. A God that hates sin and who's wrath leads to death but through His infinite mercy has provided His Son who takes the place of those that believe in him. God Jesus bore the wrath for those he has called. God is unfathomable. He cannot be contained. God is God and there is none like Him. Unless we begin to view God from this perspective and rely solely on the scriptures to acknowledge who God is (Father,
Son, and Holy Spirit), we may be unwittingly practicing idolatry. Let's lift up the Holy and Sovereign God and give him the place in our minds and hearts he deserves. To have no other gods before Him. The Living and True God.