Who Is Like the Lord?
For who in the skies above can compare with the Lord?
Who is like the Lord among the heavenly beings?
-Ethan the Ezrahite in Psalm 89:6
They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
-Paul in Romans 1:25
So the men of the city said to Joash, “Bring your son out. He has pulled down the altar of Baal and cut down the Asherah idol beside it. He must die!”
Too often, we give our worship to lesser gods. We bow our knees to imitations (at best) and usurpers (at worst). Celebrities have “followers” for a reason: they are being worshiped. Wealth, prosperity, and security are chased after while Christ remains unpursued. Politicians of all stripes compete for the allegiance that we owe to the Giver of all good things, to borrow a phrase from Rich Mullins.
And yet over and above all else–all charms and delights, all creatures and marvels, all accolades and acolytes–stands God Himself! The Great King, who alone is immortal and lives in unapproachable light (1 Timothy 6:16), reigns exalted! And we are right to join our voices with Moses when he proclaimed, “Who among the gods is like You, O LORD? Who is like You–majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders” (Exodus 15:11).
Who can we compare with God? Answer: nobody. What can equal His majesty? Answer: nothing.
And so Ethan the Ezrahite ponders the skies in all of their glory and imagines God’s varied spiritual creations inhabiting the great expanse above our heads. He envisions them together with Him in a gathering that appears rather like a council. He notes that among all the glory assembled there, one stands out as a greater glory–a glory surpassing all others. That glory belongs to God Almighty, the Creator of the very heavens whose majesty caused Ethan to wonder.
Our challenge as people of our Heavenly Father is to recognize the ways in which we have robbed God of His glory and exalted created things in His stead. We must continually be in the business of Gideon, tearing down idols that we have erected in God’s place. Some of them reside in our hearts. What does it look like to tear down the idols who sit upon the throne of our hearts? It looks like a daily death for our desires and a continual transformation of our lives.
Still, other idols have been erected in the material world and culture in which we live. When we make an assault on those idols, we can be certain that our communities will raise up a cry against us! Gideon experienced this. As he performed a righteous demolition of an unworthy god, his neighbors rose up against him with threats. In this age of digital neighborhoods, we can expect no different from our “friends.”
Yet this is our work. To recognize the false gods within and among us. To tear them down forcefully. To replace them with the only God who is worthy of our praise, of whom the skies declare, “There is no equal.”