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Creator or Creation: Who Do You Worship?

"Worship is that inner desire for wonder, amazement, and awe that every human being possesses. It is that craving to be fulfilled. It is that constant search for life. It is wanting personal meaning and purpose. It's the desire to look for someone or something to give you identity. It's that universal hunger for inner peace. It's life life-long hunt for God. It's the fact that we always live in service of something or that we always live in control of something. It's the reality that no one is godless. We all give our hearts to the one true God or to some created God replacement." (Taken from the book Parenting by Paul Tripp)

What if I told you that ALL of the problems in the world today — all of the brokenness, evil, violence, pain, suffering, and destruction are the result of one thing: misplaced worship.

I know it sounds too simple, but it’s true, and God’s Word says so — and it’s not pretty:

TALK ABOUT A MESS! How did we get from “and God saw that it was good” (Genesis 1) to this?!

The answer: From generation after generation after generation of worshipping the wrong things. God’s Word makes it clear that we are made to worship. As created beings, it’s in our spiritual and physical DNA to give our attention, affection, and devotion to the things we admire and desire most. And by doing so, we also give them control. What controls you?

As created beings, our worship should go to the One who created us, but in our freedom, in our pride, and in our lusting of the eyes and flesh, we trade our affection of God (and our understanding of His ways) for one lie after another. Lies that have been repeated and whispered to each and every one of us from the beginning of time until today by an enemy most don’t even believe is real:

“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:4-5)

“The devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor. ‘All this I will give you,’ he said, ‘if you will bow down and worship me.’” (Matthew 4:8-9)

It should come as no surprise that we all got sold a bill of goods because ONLY the Creator can satisfy His Creation.

“For everything in the world — the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life — comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.” (1 John 2:16-17)

There is nothing on this earth that will ever satisfy our desire for worship except God Himself. But we have been on the throne of our own lives for so long and we’re so comfortable there that we would rather cling to our seats and watch the world burn around us than let God back to His rightful place (by the way, He’s never NOT on the throne over all creation). As we read in Romans 1, God’s word does not sugar coat what happens when we worship OURSELVES instead of Him. We get exactly what we ask for — “knowing good AND EVIL.”

This month is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. I can think of no other example that more tragically reveals and proves the dangers of misplaced worship than human trafficking. That in 2022 — with millennia of history and knowledge at our fingertips, with all of our enlightened education and understanding, all of our claims to progress, equality, and human rights, all of our belief that we are our own gods and saviors — we are experiencing a global pandemic (in the tens of millions) of humans selling and purchasing other humans for the purpose of abusing and exploiting them sexually — is beyond human comprehension. Is there anything more shocking and reprehensible? And it’s us! More and more of our “enlightened” species are okay with using, abusing, and discarding young children like useless pieces of trash. How can this be?! How does this happen in a civilized world?

It starts with misplaced worship. When you worship yourself, ultimately everything and everyone else is just a means to an end, and their misfortune — collateral damage in your battle for control and pleasure.

God help us.

God help me. This is where it gets personal: I have been married for 13 years and now have 3 children and the tendency to put my needs and wants before my wife and kids is still strong in me every single day. I have to fight against the desire to put myself first, to manipulate situations to my advantage, to justify my actions — and I often lose that fight. Then God’s Holy Spirit brings conviction and I seek repentance from God and from my family. And I pray for the wisdom to learn from my failures, recognize my weakness, put my hope in Jesus, and ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen me and give me the victory…but the battle continues.

My only hope is that GOD IS ON THE THRONE and I choose to WORSHIP HIM.

For more information about Human Trafficking Awareness Month and what you and your family can do to get involved and fight back, visit:

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