“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you”. (Matt 6:33)
Many world religions, and even people of the Old Testament engaged in some form of idol worship. Many images associated with polytheistic idol worship include statues, carvings, paintings, deities, and the acts of sacrificial offerings. As Christians we don’t consider ourselves idol worshippers, but what we often times fail to realize is that anything we put before God becomes our “god”. For example, if we spend a Sunday morning at a sporting event as opposed to worshipping God, we have made that sporting event our “god”. In fact, when we live according to our own will and our own standards instead of God’s, we can become our own “god”. Friends, family, hobbies, recreational activities, material goods and so on are all nice things to have in life, but we must remember that everything has its place. God, being the source of all our spiritual blessings, needs to be number one in our lives. There are many ways that we can put God first in our lives.
Some include setting aside uninterrupted time to spend with God praying and studying His word, putting His teachings into practice, submitting ourselves to His will, and sharing God with those in our lives. Making life decisions based on the knowledge we’ve received from studying His word is a crucial way to put God first. It illustrates a humble submission to His power, will, and direction in our lives. It shows a trust and faith in God’s ability to provide and care for us. How we prioritize our lives and the degree of importance we place on God will ultimately determine how successful our relationship and walk with Christ will be.
The biblical account of the young rich ruler, found in Mark 10:17-27, addresses this issue specifically. The young ruler asked Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life, stating that he’s kept the teachings and ordnances of the old law from his youth up. Jesus asked the ruler to give his worldly possessions to the poor and follow after Him, but unfortunately the ruler walked away sorrowful because he couldn’t bring himself to let go of his riches. He essentially gave up his opportunity for eternal life in order to keep his riches, which carry no greater value than temporary enjoyment. Jesus used the encounter as a way of illustrating where the ruler’s heart truly stood with God. The harsh reality was that regardless of the ruler’s prior obedience to God, his riches were indeed his “god”.
As you journey through your Christian walk, I urge you to constantly examine what degree of importance you put on God. Can Christ be seen in you? Can He be seen through your actions? Can His voice be heard through your words? Do your best to walk hand and hand with God, don’t let anyone or anything stand between you and your Creator. There’s nothing more important in life than a whole-hearted, diligent effort towards making heaven your home.
We come to God by hearing the word of God (Romans 10:17), believing what we’ve heard (Hebrews 11:6), repenting which is making a change from living for self to living for God (Luke 13:3), confessing that Jesus is our Lord and Savior (Matt 10:32-33), and being baptized (Acts 2:38).