West London Alliance Church

TBT@ITT: Keller on Discerning Idols

In 2008 I began blogging. From then until sometime in 2014, I posted a fair amount of content. I'm going to reuse-recycle some of that material every Thursday here at In the Trenches. It will be TBT@ITT, or Throwback Thursday at In the Trenches. Enjoy!

In the epilogue of Counterfeit Gods Keller addresses the question "How can we discern our idols?" Four ways to discern one's idols:
  1. Consider your imagination. "...the true god of your heart is what your thoughts effortlessly go to when there is nothing else demanding your attention. What do you enjoy daydreaming about? What occupies your mind when you have nothing else to think about?...what do you habitually think about to get joy and comfort in the privacy of your heart?" (168)
  2. Consider how you spend money. "Your money flows most effortlessly toward your heart's greatest love. In fact, the mark of am idol is that you spend too much money on it, and you must try to exercise self-control constantly...Our patterns of spending reveal our idols." (168)
  3. Consider your daily functional salvation. "What are you really living for, what is your real-not your professed-god? A good way to discern this is how you respond to unanswered prayers and frustrated hopes...when you pray and work for something and you don't get it and you respond with explosive anger or deep despair, then you may have found your real god." (169)
  4. Consider your most uncontrollable emotions. "Just as a fisherman looking for fish knows to go where the water is roiling, look for your idols at the bottom of your most painful emotions, especially those that never seem to lift and that drive you to do things you know are wrong." (169)


On Monday, September 9, 2019, Jude St. John said:

Sounds like a great study Liz! I definitely recommend Keller's book on this topic.


On Thursday, September 5, 2019, Liz Russell said:

The TLC women's group is about to begin the study by Kelly Minter called 'No Other Gods' which is essentially a study of modern day idolatry. It looks at our enslavement to these idols that severely detract from our focus on pursuing a relationship with Christ.


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