“The idols of the nations are of silver and gold, made by human hands. They have mouths but cannot speak, eyes, but cannot see. They have ears but cannot hear; indeed, there is no breath in their mouths. Those who make them are just like them, as are all who trust in them.” (Psalm 135:15-18)
What a great description of idols and of the idiocy of idolatry! And how prophetic. The psalmist obviously witnessed the resurgence of idolatry in his day, and, by the time of Jeremiah the prophet, the last prophet of the Lord before His destruction judgment on Judah and Jerusalem, idolatry was full blown. Idols were even placed in the Temple. Listen to Jeremiah: “Hear this you foolish and senseless people. They have eyes, but they don’t see. They have ears, but they don’t hear.” (Jeremiah 5:21) Jeremiah was NOT, however, talking about the idols. Instead, he was talking about the people! They had, in fact, become like what they had worshiped. They had eyes but couldn’t see and ears but couldn’t hear.
Fast-forward past the exile, the return, and the intertestamental period and see Jesus in the synagogue of Capernaum. Standing before Him was a man with a paralyzed hand. In Jesus’ eyes, this was a need. In the eyes of the Pharisees and other religious rulers, it was a test. Jesus healed the man on the Sabbath. Need met. Test failed, in the eyes of the Pharisees, so they committed to destroy Jesus. How interesting that the Pharisees and others like them had eyes but could not see, and ears but could not hear.
Idolatry is not just the worship of metal or wood images. It is the worship of anything that is lifeless, anything other than God. And the worship of anything or anyone other than God is sheer futility and foolishness. We become like what we worship.