Twenty-first century Western culture views itself as advanced, an evolved people far beyond those of previous centuries. Transportation both of things and information has indeed developed. Healthcare, at least as it pertains to surgery and treatment, has progressed by leaps and bounds, too. But one area that remains mostly unchanged in its essence is Religion. Of course from the eye and even ear, the spiritual element of society appears vastly superior to temple- and idol-based worship of millenia past. Yet most of this is merely skin deep.
Drawing from the book of Acts (Bible), we see the decadent lifestyles of many Roman cities. Antioch of Syria maintained the temple of Apollo at which worshippers reenacted the pursuit of Daphne by Apollo by chasing and catching temple prostitutes in the surrounding park and forest. Ephesus held similar sexually-oriented rites in service to Diana (also known as “Artemis”), a goddess of fertility. Corinth, the melting pot of the Roman world due to shipping and trade, was known as one of the most luxuriant and debauched cities of its time. To be “Corinthian” meant to be loose, promiscuous, and openly immoral. And here, too, was another temple focused on faux worship.
How many of these so-called worshippers performed their religious duties out of genuine intent to be more pleasing to their god(s)? Is it not more likely that for many the temples were an excuse to carry out their sensual desires under the guise of religion? Worship of sex rather than any specific god?
Thus today the name of the god has changed, and the places of “worship” have grown more convenient. The god, Sex, can be served at a host of bars and clubs and in numerous magazines. Yet the new frontier where more than a million new altars are erected each day is the Internet.
The nations of the past would be amazed at the level of depravity that goes from camera to hard drive and then streams through wire and airwave. We have not changed. The Gospel of Jesus Christ remains the same as it did two thousand years ago: repent of your sins, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ that His sinless life and innocent, sacrificial, substitutionary death has made you pleasing to God, and be saved. Conversely, the hell-bound alternatives from the past several thousand years are alive and well today — new names and more acceptable “temples” — satisfying the flesh and leading the soul to an eternity of darkness.
(c) 2005 Veritas Road