Beyond the Weekend

October 26 | Counterfeit Gods

October 26, 2021


“And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. He says that gods made by human hands are no gods at all.” Acts 19:26

Read: Acts 19:23-27
Acts 19


A silversmith named Demetrius wants to make trouble for Paul and reverse the changes happening in the city. He gathers a crowd to tell them that Paul is turning people away from the temple of Artemis. Demetrius tells them Paul is saying that gods made by human hands are no gods at all. Turning from idolatry seems to be a theme of Paul’s ministry in Ephesus and beyond. Paul knows that for people to turn toward God, they also need to turn away from these idols and false gods.

It’s easy for us to think idolatry is no longer a problem today, or at least not a problem for us. Pastor and author Tim Keller says, “An idol is whatever you look at and say, in your heart of hearts, ‘If I have that, then I’ll feel my life has meaning, then I’ll know I have value, then I’ll feel significant and secure.’ There are many ways to describe that kind of relationship to something, but perhaps the best one is worship.”

We might not worship manmade gods now, but we still allow things to become “gods” in our lives. It might be money as we tie our value to the numbers in our bank account. Or it could be our reputation, children, house, work or the number of places we travel to visit. Each of these good things can take the place of God in our hearts if we are not careful. May we be thankful for these gifts of God—and remember counterfeit gods are no gods at all.


In your Jesus & The City journal, write on page 50 this line, “You are not God.” Then write down the things you recognize are taking the place of God in your heart. As you go about your week, look out for counterfeit gods and take the opportunity to whisper to yourself, “You are good, but you are not God.”


Join us this year as we read through the New Testament.

Today’s reading is Hebrews 7.

Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.

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