“Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, ninety feet high.” Da 3:1 NIV
It’s safe to say that anyone who builds a ninety-foot-tall statue to themselves is probably compensating for something. This statue was the epitome of pride. We all have a little Nebuchadnezzar in us. We’d never build a ninety-foot-tall statue of ourselves, but we get upset when people don’t bow to our wishes. We’d never throw someone into a fiery furnace, but our anger heats up when we don’t get our own way. We seek worship in more subtle ways. We exaggerate on our résumé, put down others behind their back, and tell white lies to hide the gray areas of our lives. If you don’t find your identity and security in what Christ has accomplished for you on the cross, you’ll hide your insecurities behind your hypocrisy. You’ll try to fight your own battles, create your own opportunities, and establish your own reputation. Two Scriptures define the fall of King Saul: (1) “Then Saul built an altar to the Lord” (1Sa 14:35 NLT). (2) “Saul…set up a monument to himself” (1Sa 15:12 NLT). And Samuel saw right through the smoke screen: “Although you may think little of yourself, are you not the leader of the tribes of Israel?” (1Sa 15:17 NLT). You know who builds monuments to themselves? Those who think little of themselves! And the more insecure a person is, the more monuments they need to build. There’s a fine line between “Thy kingdom come” and “My kingdom come.” If you cross that line, your relationship with God is self-serving. You aren’t serving Him, you are using Him. You aren’t building altars to God; you’re building monuments to yourself—and that’s idolatry.
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