Week Eight – Idolatry Discerning
SUMMARY: Students will understand that when other‘things’ are more important to us than our relationship with God, they become idols. Students will be challenged to identify, understand and discern the idols of our time and to then respond prophetically.
We, humans, were created to worship God. If we don’t worship God, we worship something else. Romans 1:25 describes how the Romans had “exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshipped and served created things rather than the Creator.”
Any area of study is never neutral as they always have values attached. Learning about and discerning the values tell us about those who produce them, what they think is important, and what they believe is true. It tells us about the values of cultures, times, and belief systems. Christian education is concerned with pointing out the values that surround the topics. Students must understand that worldviews affect what people believe, say and do.
Therefore, students need to learn to “read” a worldview. They need to ask questions about what is being portrayed in regard to culture, values, and belief systems. Through the curriculum, students will be challenged to identify and understand the idols of our time (and times past). They must be challenged to lay bare these idols.
But this is not the end. Students need to test these ideas against the Transformational worldview. God’s truth must also be spoken to be modern-day prophets. They must be truth-speakers!
Could be used for devotions or memory work.
Deuteronomy 11:16 – “Be careful, or you will be enticed to turn away and worship other gods and bow down to them.”
I John 4:1 – “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
Romans 12:2 – “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Other Passages to Ponder:
- I Thessalonians 5:21
- I Corinthians 10:14
- I John 5:21
- Hebrews 12:1
- I Kings 3:9 (king asks for a discerning heart)
- Philippians 1:9-10
- Proverbs 14:6
- Psalm 119:25
- Ephesians 4:14-32
- Proverbs 3:1-18
- James 3:13-18
- Deuteronomy 5:7-8
You can use these as part of your morning devotions or to play in the background during work.
Ideas that you can connect to the learning that is happening or encourage in your student’s free time.
- Fast from something you’re too attached to
- Write a movie review from a Christian perspective
- Conduct a time audit for a week (Ex. 1, Ex. 2)
- Donate toys (i.e., Bible for Missions)
- Memorize a Bible verse
- Tell someone your favourite author’s worldview
- Write a prayer of confession
- Support/join organizations that are responding to the brokenness caused by idolatry (Do justice., Oxfam, The Centre)
- Try some reader’s theatre: “Confessions of an Idolater”
- Start/join a Bible study
- Reflect on your motives for a relationship with God
- Help someone that’s a hoarder
- Create an accountability group
- Start a “no logo” day or brand name “fast”
- Watch a biography/documentary and ascertain an idol
- Add an accountability app to your phone
- Do a spending audit – what are your priorities?
- Analyze advertisements
Digital books, devotion ideas, online resources, blog articles, etc.
- Rainbow Fish – Read Aloud (Div 1)
- The Paper Bag Princess – Read Aloud (Div 1-2)
- The Tale of Peter Rabbit – Read Aloud (Div 1-2)
- My Girl, Hallie – Radio Story (Div 1-3)
- Idol Worship: Then & Now – Youtube (Div 3-4)
- What is a Trader? – Youtube (Div 3-4)
- Holy Thief – Short Video Reflection – (Div 3-4)
- The High Price of Materialism – Youtube (Div 4)
- Counterfeit Gods – Spoken Word (Div 4)
- Idolatry-Discerner: Be Different – Blog
- No Idolatry- Pt. 1, Pt. 2, Pt. 3, Pt. 4, Pt. 5 – Devotion
- 10 Clues That Something Has Become An Idol – Blog
- Elementary: Idolatry Discerning Devo Ideas
- A Ring-Side Seat For My Battle Against An Idol – Devotion
- The Death Trap Called Covetous – Devotion
- Idolatry – Collection of articles
- Are We Nurturing Kids Into Idolatry? – Blog
- What’s Your Worldview? – Article
- Digital Learning: How is it Shaping Our Families? – Article
- Internet Savvy Training – Training Course for Parents
FORMATIONAL LEARNING EXPERIENCES (FLEX)
These are experiences that connect our learning/work to real people/problems (to go beyond our normal classroom walls). These are authentic opportunities for students to practice living the Kingdom story.
Create a “Family Tech Use Agreement.” Here’s a framework to help you get started and another example that may help your discussions. As you engage in these discussions around technology misuse, think about how God has and continues to use technology for His kingdom.
A great resource on this topic is “Tech-Wise Family” by Andy Crouch. If you would rather watch a video, you can “participate” in this forum, where Andy Crouch invites the participants into the ideas and research from his book. Another option: here’s a podcast episode with Andy Crouch on this topic.
REFLECTIVE QUESTIONS/SENTENCE STARTERS
It is said that we don’t learn from doing, but from reflecting on what we do. Give students time and space to reflect on their experiences and learning this week.
- How much time did you spend with God this week?
- What is something that you would have a hard time giving up for God?
- Why should we discern idols?
- Who is the wisest person you know? Tell me about that person.
- When in your life have you had the opportunity to be a “truth speaker?”
- Where do you find it most difficult to not be conformed “to the patterns of this world?”