1 John 5:21 -- Little children, guard yourselves from idols.
Religious things can become idols that are loved and worshipped too.
Like the bronze serpent that Moses made (Num. 21:1-9). It had its place and purpose but afterward became an object of worship that was destroyed by King Hezekiah.
2 Kings 18:1-7 –
Now it came about in the third year of Hoshea, the son of Elah king of Israel, that Hezekiah the son of Ahaz king of Judah became king. He was twenty-five years old when he became king, and he reigned twenty-nine years in Jerusalem; and his mother’s name was Abi the daughter of Zechariah. He did right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that his father David had done. He removed the high places and broke down the sacred pillars and cut down the Asherah. He also broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the sons of Israel burned incense to it; and it was called Nehushtan. He trusted in the LORD, the God of Israel; so that after him there was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor among those who were before him. For he clung to the LORD; he did not depart from following Him, but kept His commandments, which the LORD had commanded Moses.
And the LORD was with him; wherever he went he prospered.
OUR GREAT CALLING
1 Cor. 1:9 –
God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
The greatness of the Lord Jesus Christ:
Col. 1:15-19 –
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities-- all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. For it was the Father's good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him,
“…… we are ‘called into the fellowship’ of this One, His Son, and called into all that the Word says about ‘in a Son’ (Heb. 1:2; Nestle's Greek Interlinear). He is the destined Lord: the One destined to embrace all things, the appointed Heir. He is the very continuity and consistency and integration of all things; and He will, at last, sum up in Himself, or having Himself summed up, gather together - thus, reuniting this broken universe. It is and shall be comprehended by Him, God's Son.”
“What I do want, if all the things said are difficult for you, is that an impression will have been made of the Lord Jesus Christ. I want you all, especially you young people (and perhaps many of you have recently come to the Lord Jesus), I want you to go away saying, ‘I never, never knew how great it was to come to Him! What a great thing it is to be “called into the fellowship” of God's Son. How great He is!’ An impression - the Lord make the impression, or may He come upon us with awesome wonder.
“We have not come into some very small, light, frivolous thing. However we may joyfully sing our choruses and so on, but remember, this is no cheap thing. This is no small thing. This is no easy thing. This is a thing which embraces the universe, and we are called into that fellowship.”
“We have been saying that we shall never get anywhere at all in the Christian life as the Lord's people, and we shall certainly never get through to the end and at the end, unless we have an adequate apprehension of the greatness of Christ. Over against all the littleness of what is presented as Christianity, there stands this immensity of that into which we are called when we are called into fellowship with God's Son.
“…… the great, eternal, matchless Person of Jesus Christ, …… is foundational to everything. I say again that you will never get very far if you have only a small apprehension, a small understanding of the One into Whose fellowship we are called. Seeing that many of you are Christians on the way, well on the way, and some far on the way, let me say to you that this understanding of Christ, Himself, is not just an initial need. We are only going to get through at the end, through all the trials, the adversities, the difficulties, the sufferings, the afflictions, the perplexities, and the problems of mature, spiritual life, we are only going to get through under the increasing pressure and the forces of evil, on the ground of an adequate apprehension of the Lord Jesus. It is He alone Who can measure up to our need and Who can take the measure and meet it.”
Excerpts from “Called Unto the Fellowship of His Son” by T. Austin-Sparks.