King Nebuchadnezzar sent word to gather... all the officials of the provinces, to come to the dedication of the image which King Nebuchadnezzar had set up...
'There are certain Jews whom you have set over the affairs of the province of Babylon: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego; these men, O king, have not paid due regard to you. They do not serve your gods or worship the gold image which you have set up'...
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered... 'Our God Whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.'
'Show Me a denarius. Whose image and inscription does it have?' They answered and said, 'Caesar's.' '
For most of our time on earth, man has been ruled by kings and warlords: princes of power. Because power is the world's hottest commodity. Many of our best and brightest seek it.
But without God, power burns the hearts of its holders. Searing spreads: hot steam replaces living water. The result? A hardening of the heart, head, neck, conscience and compassion; a widening of the mouth, a closing of the hand and a darkening of the eyes.
Satan was the first to feel this burn. In the process, he exchanged the 'Robe of righteousness' (Isaiah 61:10) for the 'Cloak of covetousness' (1 Thessalonians 2:5).
The goal of his push for power? Worship. Satan wanted to be worshipped. He convinced one third of God's holy angels he was worthy of worship. He even tried to convince God's Own Son: ' 'All this I will give you,' he said, 'if you will bow down and worship me' ' (Matthew 4:9).
Actors, models and talent for Christ: Don't worship kings: neither the kings of entertainment, nor their shiny statues, like Oscars, Emmys and Golden Globes. Don't worship any king but Jesus, nor any image but His.
Strange to consider: He made His Own Image unremarkable, perhaps so we would look to the Heart of His Matter. Therefore, 'Be clothed with humility, for God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.'
'Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty Hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.'
'Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him' (1 Peter 5:5-9).
'Therefore, submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you' (James 4:7).
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Images series.