“Bel bows down, Nebo stoops low; their idols are borne by beasts of burden. The images that are carried about are burdensome, a burden for the weary. They stoop and bow down together; unable to rescue the burden, they themselves go off into captivity.
“Listen to Me, you descendants of Jacob, all the remnant of the people of Israel, you whom I have upheld since your birth, and have carried since you were born. Even to your old age and gray hairs I am He, I am He Who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.” (Isaiah 46:1-4)
A prophecy concerning the Babylonian gods: they are a burden to be borne, to be borne by those who worship them; a weary weight that cannot save nor deliver, neither their servants or themselves. To my knowledge all the gods of the nations (which were idols) demanded service, had to ‘be borne’ by their worshipers, but they had no real power to save of deliver them.
“But God…!” Yahweh of Israel was different. Yes, His people were called to worship Him, but they were called, not merely into service, but into relationship with God, the God Who Himself bore His people. He carried them, as one writer penned, “on eagles’ wings” (cf Exodus 19:4). And He alone had the power to save and deliver them- over and over again.
Well, our ‘modern day idols’ may appear a little different- the idols of pride and greed, lust and desire, fear and condemnation; but do they not also demand ‘service,’ demand to be carried by those of us who will bow to them, serve them? All with the promise to deliver us, comfort us, but without any real power to do any of it. On the contrary, they will lead us into terrible bondage and death.
But the same God who carried His beloved Israel will carry, deliver and save those who call on Him in worship today! Let’s ‘lay down our idols,’ and allow God in Christ to lead and carry us out of bondage, and into liberty… into Himself!