Some of my notes about various false gods that continue to have influences in the lives of Christians. Although primarily identified in the Old Testament, these false dieties still tend to have a strong influence in the lives of believers today:
Asherah - was a leading deity of the Canaanite pantheon, a wife/sister of El and goddess of fertility. Commonly worshiped at shrines in or near groves of evergreen trees, or at places marked by wooden pole. The theme here would be the god of sexuality which, judging from television, printed media and the internet, is a very powerful false god in the world today, distracting attention and time from the lives of believers. Adult media and pornography can have devastating influences in the lives of believers.
Molech - The name of the idol god of the Ammonites, to which human victims, particularly young children were offered in sacrifice. Its image was a hollow brazen figure, with the head of an ox, and outstretched human arms. It was heated red hot by a fire from within, and the little ones placed in its arms to be slowly burned, while to prevent the parents from hearing the dying cries, the sacrificing priests beat drums. Although the idea of child sacrifice may initially seem unlikely today, the fact is that the abortion culture, even in the church (primarily seen through influences such as abortifacents like the birth control pill). Additionally, the idea of child-sacrifice isn't that alien of a concept when you consider how many Christian families will sacrifice children, or having children, for the sake of careers or material pursuits. It seems as if the common thinking in the church today is that 1-2 children are the acceptable norm, and I question sometimes if many Christians have just accepted societies standards while ignoring God's original command to Adam, one never revoked, to "go fourth, be fruitful and multiply."
Mammon - A common Aramaic word (mamon) for riches, found in Mt 6:24 and in Lk 16:9,11,13. In these passages, mammon merely means wealth, and is called "unrighteous," because of the abuse of riches. The love of money and material possessions also has a strong influence in the church today, and for many believers, self included, there needs to be a continual seeking of ways to flee from the entices of this false god. I struggle with this one the most, personally - not necessarily a love of money, but the sense of seeing a false sense of security offered in money, employment, savings, etc. As the Word says, we should not store up treasures on earth, but rather treasures in heaven (Matt. 6:19-20).