Creating is in our DNA. It is built into us. God created the world and everything in it, including you and I — humans. We are created in His image — Male and Female alike. In Genesis 1:26-27 we read:
“Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…
Just a little bit later you read:
” …So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” (Ge 1:26–27)
As those who are made in God’s image, we are gifted towards creating. Some of us are more gifted than others, but we are all designed to create.
Not only is creating built into us, but we are tasked to create by God.
In Genesis 2:15 we read:
“The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” (Ge 2:15)
To “work it” carries the meaning, the idea, of creating, of making. To take the raw materials of the garden and work it to make something glorious. Creating itself is not a bad thing. It’s more of a neutral thing. It is the why and what we create that matters.
Not only does man create in order to make a name for themselves, but man also creates in order to make gods for themselves.
Idolatry is one of the oldest forms of rebellion.
Since the beginning, man has been fashioning gods in their own image. But God abhors idolatry. We know because in the first and second commandments of the 10 commandments God says,
““You shall have no other gods before me. “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.” (Ex 20:3–4)
God abhors idolatry!
Idols never provide us with that which we desire. Israel learned this through the prophets. One was Habakkuk, who asks:
““What profit is an idol when its maker has shaped it, a metal image, a teacher of lies? For its maker trusts in his own creation when he makes speechless idols! Woe to him who says to a wooden thing, Awake; to a silent stone, Arise! Can this teach? Behold, it is overlaid with gold and silver, and there is no breath at all in it”” (Hab 2:18–19)
Other prophets such as Jeremiah and Isaiah, join with Habakkuk in condemning and pointing out the futility of creating and worshipping idols. But man continues to do it. Even those in Jesus’ day continued to manufacture idols.
More crooked than creating an idol from wood, hay, or straw was their desire to create Jesus in their own making.
We have a tendency to try to make Jesus into who we want Him to be.
Instead of believing and accepting Jesus’ message with joy, The religious and even the irreligious, they reject the Jesus of the Bible and seek to make Him into the god they want Him to be.
The religious seek to make Him into:
- A rigid and hard figure whom we must work for in order to earn or keep our salvation.
The irreligious seek to make Jesus into:
- A “woke Savior” or what you might refer to as “Hippie Jesus”. He would never say anything that hurts anyone’s feelings. No trigger words or actions come from Jesus. He is fully welcoming. Accepting everyone and anyone into the family no matter what they believe.
- Or Jesus is made into: “A meek and mild figure”. One who doesn’t judge anyone. Hell is not a reality, except for the really bad people like Hitler. Everyone else is going to heaven. No one will suffer or experience judgment.
- Still others seek to make Jesus into what I like to refer to as: “Genie in the bottle Jesus” He will give you whatever you want. Whatever your heart desires Jesus will provide. All you have to do is say the right thing and have enough faith and you can have whatever your heart desires.
The religious and even the irreligious, they reject the Jesus of the Bible and seek to make Him into the god they want Him to be.
Jesus doesn’t accept our image of Him. He is not an idol.
Jesus is not someone we can fashion and form any way that we like. He is not someone we can make in our own image. That is not who Jesus is. Instead, Jesus is the God sent Savior of the world.
Instead of becoming who we want Him to become, Jesus is who we need Him to be — a gracious God who calls us to repent of our sins and trust in His sacrifice on our behalf.
Idols can’t provide us salvation. They can’t provide us release from the bondage of sin, Satan and death. Idol’s can’t change us. Idols are what we make them to be.
If we make them, that means we make them in our image.
How do we know if we have made Jesus in our image?
I don’t know about you but I don’t make things that cause me to change. I make things that support me for who I am so that I can be who I want to be. That is how you know if you are worshipping an idol of Jesus or the true Jesus. The Jesus we make doesn’t disagree with us. He doesn’t hold us accountable because there is nothing we need to be held accountable for. We are good. We have it together. The Jesus of our own making affirms who we are. But that is not the real Jesus.
The real Jesus calls us to repentance.
He knows we are sinners who have rebelled against Him. He calls us to turn from our rebellion to follow Him.
The real Jesus also calls us to believe the joyous message of the gospel.
He offers us forgiveness, salvation, and a different way of life that reflects God’s wisdom.
That is who the real Jesus is. He is the God-sent Savior. He is not an idol. He is not someone we have fashioned. Instead, He is someone in whom we should find hope and salvation.
Stop trying to create Jesus in your image!