Somewhere in a jungle in Africa a small tribe worships a snake. Sometime past in Israel children were sacrificed to the pagan deity, Molech. Everywhere I turn I think the things of this world are of more consequence that God. This is idolatry, and it’s not just bowing down and worshiping graven images. It is a heart that treasures the things of this world above the God who creates, preserves, and redeems us.
“No other gods”, is a commandment that is not taken very seriously by many Christians today. Mostly because we think that we have the problem licked. But Greg Dutcher’s book, You Are The Treasure That I Seek…: But There’s a Lot Of Cool Stuff Out There, Lord, takes aim at this growing menace among even the most fundamental among Christians.
The book begins with examples of idolatry from Africa, then middle-class America, and then from an Evangelical, Bible-believing Pastor. The point is that idolatry is alive and well, and it springs up day after day in life after life.
Following the opening chapter, Dutcher continues on with the bad news of our sin of idolatry as he shows us the penalty for this sin, and then explains further how idolatry is deeply rooted in the fallen nature of man. Then we get the good news, Jesus Christ came to save idolaters.
The rest of the book then is aimed at the sanctification of the believer through learning to identify idolatry in our own lives and then go on the offense against idolatry. The best defense is a strong offense, the best way to root out idolatry (loving, trusting, or fearing things other than God), is by focusing our love on God through Christ.
The book is very practical in it’s content, but then Dutcher takes practicality to a new level. The end of the book includes two appendices, Idolatry Syndrome Study Cases (illustrations of what idolatry looks like in different situations) and A First-Aid Kit For Recovering Idolaters (Scriptures, Prayers, and Quotes for fighting idolatry). At the end of each chapter and the first appendix questions for further study invite us to go further in our study and think more deeply about idolatry in our own lives. The study questions would make the book ideal for a book discussion group.
I highly recommend this book to be read by Christians who believe that they have idolatry defeated, or those who realize that they don’t.
Gospel-centered, Christ-exalting, and life-engaging is how I would describe this book.