Gods at War: Defeating the Idols that Battle for Your Heart

Gods at War: Defeating the Idols that Battle for Your Heart

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by Kyle Idleman

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In gods at war, Kyle Idleman, bestselling author of not a fan, helps every believer recognize there are false gods at war within each of us, and they battle for the place of glory and control in our lives. What keeps us from truly following Jesus is that our hearts are pursuing something or someone else. While these pursuits may not be the

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In gods at war, Kyle Idleman, bestselling author of not a fan, helps every believer recognize there are false gods at war within each of us, and they battle for the place of glory and control in our lives. What keeps us from truly following Jesus is that our hearts are pursuing something or someone else. While these pursuits may not be the “graven images” of old, they are in fact modern day idols. Behind the sin you’re struggling with, the discouragement you’re dealing with, the lack of purpose you’re living with is a false god that is winning the war for your heart.

According to Idleman, idolatry isn’t an issue—it is the issue.

By asking insightful questions, Idleman reveals which false gods each of us are allowing on the throne of our lives. What do you sacrifice for? What makes you mad? What do you worry about? Whose applause do you long for? We’re all wired for worship, but we often end up valuing and honoring the idols of money, sex, food, romance, success and many others that keep us from the intimate relationship with God that we desire.

Using true, powerful and honest testimonies of those who have struggled in each area, gods at war illustrates a clear path away from the heartache of our 21st century idolatry back to the heart of God – enabling us to truly be completely committed followers of Jesus.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The teaching pastor of the fourth largest church in the U.S. follows his blockbuster Not a Fan with a hard-hitting book about the allure of idols: money, sex, food, power, achievement, and family. He weaves Bible text explication with contemporary or classical Christian thought and personal stories. In his chapter on the "god of family," for example, he explicates Genesis 22 on Abraham's test with Isaac, quotes a story by C.S. Lewis, then does not let himself off the hook in showing how he can make his own family an idol. He then turns the challenge to the reader. A distinctive and increasingly popular feature included is QR codes that take readers to more web content on a particular theme. Idleman's tone is authentic and theologically mature for a relatively new voice on the scene, and companion preaching videos make this a package that faith explorers and long-time Christians will appreciate in home groups and church classes as well. Idleman is not a one-hit wonder, but with a pastor's edge and comprehensive approach shows he's engaged in the battle to turn readers' hearts to God.
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In his latest book, unconventional preacher/author Kyle Idleman (not a fan) counsels us that the false idols mentioned in the Bible aren't just Old Testament statues; they are the very real false gods vying today for your heart and soul. Pastor Idleman cuts through theological rhetoric to present core questions about what gods we truly serve, whether they are money, sex, success, romance, food, or peer approval. Strong testimonies and a decisive message.

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Gods at War

By Kyle Idleman


Copyright © 2013 Kyle Idleman
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-0-310-31884-2

Chapter One

idolatry is the issue

Idolatry is huge in the Bible, dominant in our personal lives, and irrelevant in our mistaken estimations. —Os Guinness

Imagine a man who has been coughing constantly. This cough keeps him up half of the night and interrupts any conversation he has that lasts more than a minute or two. The cough is so unrelenting that he goes to the doctor.

The doctor runs his tests.

Lung cancer.

Now imagine the doctor knows how tough the news will be to handle. So he doesn't tell his patient about cancer. Instead, he writes a prescription for some strong cough medicine and tells him that he should be feeling better soon. The man is delighted with this prognosis. And sure enough, he sleeps much better that night. The cough syrup seems to have solved his problem.

Meanwhile, very quietly, the cancer is eating away at his body.

As a teacher and church leader, I talk to people every week who are coughing.












They come to me and share their struggles.

They unload their frustrations.

They express their discouragement. They display their wounds.

They confess their sins.

When I talk to people, they point to what they believe is the problem. In their minds, they've nailed it. They can't stop coughing. But here's what I've discovered: they're talking about a symptom rather than the true illness—the true issue—which is always idolatry.

CASE STUDY 1: It's Not about the Money

When I arrive at the office, I see that he's already there, sitting outside my door. I bet he's been there for fifteen minutes. I size him up as the kind of man who has never been late to an appointment in his life.

His clothing and shoes appear to be above my scale. It occurs to me that I should be the one waiting on him, maybe for some kind of high-level business advice. I smile to myself knowing that he's probably thinking the same thing. Still, there is something about him that doesn't match his carefully put together look. What is it that doesn't fit?

There. It's in his eyes. There is deep worry in them, not the easy confidence of the business achiever.

I show him to a seat in my office. He skips the chitchat and gets right to the subject. It's easy to see he's a no-nonsense, get-to-it kind of guy.

"I'm worried about my family," he says with a deep sigh.

"Your family? Is that why you're here?"

"Well, no. It's about me, of course. I just worry about what I've done to them. Their future. Our name."

His story is short and not so sweet. The IRS has caught him cheating on his taxes, on a serious scale. He enumerates the various charges he's facing, and I don't even understand all of them. It's clear that he does, however. And it's clear that, at the very least, he will devote much of the rest of his life to making good on the financial penalties that are soon to be imposed.

I'm not sure what to tell him. He seems to understand the gravity of his situation. I certainly don't give legal advice. But I can see that it's not just about getting caught; it's more about coming to grips with what he has done.

We sit without speaking for a moment, and finally he looks up and says, "The thing I come back to over and over—and can't get an answer to—is why."

"You mean other than financial gain?"

He chuckles drily. "Financial gain? Kyle, I didn't need the money. I didn't need a penny of it; I'm a millionaire several times over. I could have gone to my accountants, paid my taxes right down the line, given away plenty more, and still lived the same comfortable life and never known the difference. Whatever I really owed the government? I wouldn't have missed it."

That's a world I don't live in, but I smile and nod, pretending to understand. "Okay. So if not for financial gain, then what's your best 'why' theory?"

His eyes meet mine before wandering to the window. The sun shines on his face, and I can see the slightest hint of wetness in those eyes.

"That's what I'm saying, Kyle. I don't know. I really don't get it. It's ridiculously stupid, and I don't do stupid things. Not with money or anything else. And listen—" He darts a quick look at me. "I know I'm a sinner. I get that. I have no problem calling this what it is: sin. Ugly sin. But why this sin? Why a sin so unnecessary?"

We talk about it. We talk about his life, his family, his upbringing, and the things that have influenced him. What I want him to see is that sin doesn't just spring up out of nowhere. It usually grows where some kind of seed has been planted.

We need to dig beneath the soil a bit.

"You said the money was unnecessary," I say. "But money, as a rule, has been pretty important for you. Would you agree?"

"Sure. Obviously."

"Important enough that you might describe it as your main motivation, as your master goal?"

He thinks about it. "Yeah. That's fair."

"As a god?"

For a moment he doesn't understand the question. Then he exhales slowly. I see the answer written across his face.

"It wasn't always like that," he says.

"No, it never is, in the beginning. Goals can become gods. You start to serve them, live for them, and sacrifice for them. In the beginning, it was about your money serving you. But at some point, do you think you switched roles?"

"I never thought about it like that."

CASE STUDY 2: No Big Deal

She's a young woman who grew up in our church. Her family wants me to meet and talk with her. They're concerned because she's about to move in with her boyfriend, who isn't a Christian. This ought to be a fun one.

I call her twice and leave messages, but she doesn't return my call. The third time she picks up. She knows why I'm calling and tries to laugh it off.

"I can't believe my parents are making such a big deal out of this," she says with a nervous laugh. I can picture her rolling her eyes. In her mind this whole thing is a mild cough and nothing to worry about.

"Well, I appreciate your talking to me for a few minutes. But I have to ask, do you think it's possible that you've got this backward?"

"What do you mean?"

"That instead of making a big deal out of nothing, it could be that you're making nothing out of a big deal?"

More nervous laughter. "It's not a big deal," she says again.

"Do you mind my telling you why I think it is?"

She sighs deeply and proceeds to give me her prediction of all the reasons she thinks I'll produce.

I interrupt her with a question. "Have you thought about how much moving in together is going to cost you?"

"You mean the cost of the apartment?"

"No, I'm not necessarily talking about money. I mean the way your family feels about it, and the pressure you're getting from them. That's a kind of price, right?"

"Yeah, I guess it is, but that's their problem."

"And what is this going to cost your future marriage?"

"I don't even know if we're going to get married," she responds.

"I'm not necessarily talking about your getting married to him, because statistically speaking, you most likely won't."

She understands what I'm getting at, but I push it a bit farther. "How much is this going to cost your future husband? What price will he have to pay for this decision?" She has to stop and consider that one.

I continue to count the ways that this decision is a big deal, because it's costing her more than she knows.

"So here's what I suggest. If you're willing to pay a price, then this must be pretty important to you. It must be a fairly big deal if you're willing to go through all of this."

I take her silence for reflection, and I finally get to my point. "When I see the sacrifices you are willing to make, and the fact that you are willing to ignore what God has to say about all this, it seems to me that you've turned this relationship into a god."

"What do you mean by that?"

"A god is what we sacrifice for and what we pursue. From where I sit, you have the Lord God on one side saying one thing, and your boyfriend on the other side saying something else. And you're choosing your boyfriend over God. The Bible calls that idolatry, and it's actually a pretty big deal."

No nervous laughter this time. She confesses, "I've never thought about it like that."

CASE STUDY 3: The Secret Struggle

He comes in maybe five or ten minutes late.

He had asked if we could talk for a few minutes, and I suggested meeting for coffee. But he wanted to meet someplace "a little more private." So we set my office as the location.

He arrives and pauses in the doorway, as if still not sure he wants to keep this appointment.

"Come on in." I smile and motion toward a seat.

He answers my smile with a very brief one. He sits, and his body language is all about reluctance. He wraps his arms one around another, lightly massaging his right elbow. I guess he's about my age, midthirties, an ordinary guy. He hasn't told me what this meeting is about, but I know. The conversation I'm about to have has become very familiar.

I ask him a few mundane questions about his work, where he's from, anything to break the ice and create a more relaxed setting. When we've done that for a couple of minutes, he finally broaches his subject. I can tell it takes all the courage he can summon to release his long-held secret.

"I ... um ... I think I'm addicted to pornography, or something," he stammers.

He looks at his shoes.

"Okay. Well you're not the first person to walk in here and sit in that seat and say those words. How long has this been a struggle?"

He tells his story, starting when he was twelve years old and saw certain images with the guys—in magazines smuggled in from somebody's dad's closet. Pictures that disturbed him at first. Pictures that lodged in his mind, that wouldn't go away, that started calling to him. Pictures he can perfectly visualize all these years later.

He talks about his hatred of the internet. He describes the web as if it were his mortal enemy.

"In the old days, people had to go to those stores," he says. "Ugly stores with the windows all painted over. Cheap, seedy places. I never had the courage to go into one of those stores."

"But the internet is anonymous."

"Exactly," he says. "It's so easy. Any kind of picture, any kind of video is at your fingertips. Just like that. Instant gratification, whenever you feel the slightest urge."

He speaks with the weary tones of a twenty-year slave, of a prisoner who has given up on escape plans.

"What am I supposed to do," he says, "unplug the computer? I'm dependent on the internet like everyone else. I need it for work. I need it for everything. Even if I just used a phone, you can pull up those images there. Turn on the television, and there are a million suggestions. Am I supposed to just watch the Disney Channel?"

He says he had no idea what pornography would do to his life, particularly his relationships. He seems to understand, at least to some degree, how it has changed the way he views and interacts with women.

"Thing is," he said, "you come to see it's just an itch. That's all. An itch. But it never goes away, and you have to scratch. Well, you have to scratch harder and deeper as time goes by. You know what I mean?"

"I know."

There is silence. I'm sure he's expecting me to give the same advice he has heard for so many years: Put a filter on your internet browser. Join a support group. Find an accountability partner. Redirect your eyes. All helpful suggestions, but I know he's tried them all multiple times; otherwise he wouldn't be sitting in front of me.

What I know is that there is an idol that must be dethroned, and until that happens he will suffer. He'll enjoy no intimacy in relationships. He'll struggle to have any real connection with God.

"You think what you have is a lust problem, but what you really have is a worship problem. The question you have to answer each day is, Will I worship God or will I worship sex?"

He doesn't verbalize it, but the expression on his face says, "I've never thought about it like that."

What Lies Beneath

Idolatry isn't just one of many sins; rather it's the one great sin that all others come from. So if you start scratching at whatever struggle you're dealing with, eventually you'll find that underneath it is a false god. Until that god is dethroned, and the Lord God takes his rightful place, you will not have victory.

Idolatry isn't an issue; it is the issue. All roads lead to the dusty, overlooked concept of false gods. Deal with life on the glossy outer layers, and you might never see it; scratch a little beneath the surface, and you begin to see that it's always there, under some other coat of paint. There are a hundred million different symptoms, but the issue is always idolatry.

That's why, when Moses stood on Mount Sinai and received the Ten Commandments from God, the first one was, "I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me" (Ex. 20:2–3).

When God issued this command during the time of Moses, the people were familiar with a lot of other gods. God's people had spent more than four hundred years in Egypt as slaves. Egypt was crowded with gods. They had taken over the neighborhood —literally. The Egyptians had local gods for every district. Egypt was the Baskin-Robbins of gods. You could pick and choose the flavors you wanted.

The Bible's paradigm is different. When we hear God say, "You will have no other gods before me," we think of it as a hierarchy: God is always in first place. But there are no places. God isn't interested in competing against others or being first among many.

God will not be part of any hierarchy.

He wasn't saying "before me" as in "ahead of me." A better understanding of the Hebrew word translated "before me" is "in my presence."

God declines to sit atop an organizational flowchart. He is the organization. He is not interested in being president of the board. He is the board. And life doesn't work until everyone else sitting around the table in the boardroom of your heart is fired. He is God, and there are no other applicants for that position. There are no partial gods, no honorary gods, no interim gods, no assistants to the regional gods.

God is saying this not because he is insecure but because it's the way of truth in this universe, which is his creation. Only one God owns and operates it. Only one God designed it, and only one God knows how it works. He is the only God who can help us, direct us, satisfy us, save us.

As we read Exodus 20, we see that the one true God has had it with the imitation and substitute gods. So God tells the nation of Israel to break up the pantheon; send it home. All other god activity is cancelled. He makes sure the people understand that he is the one and only. He is the Lord God.

You may be thinking, Thanks for the history lesson, but that was a long time ago. After all, in our time, the problem doesn't appear to be that people worship many gods; it's that they don't worship any god.

Yet my guess is that the list of our gods is longer than theirs. Just because we call them by different names doesn't change what they are. We may not have the god of commerce, the god of agriculture, the god of sex, or the god of the hunt. But we do have portfolios, automobiles, adult entertainment, and sports. If it walks like an idol, and quacks like an idol ...

You can call it a cough instead of calling it cancer, but that doesn't make it any less deadly.

Idol Makeover

One of our problems in identifying the gods is that their identities not only lack the usual trappings of religion; they are also things that often aren't even wrong. Is God against pleasure? Sex? Money? Power?

These things are not immoral but amoral; they are morally neutral until they are not. You could be serving something that is, in itself, very commendable. It could be family or career. It could be a worthy cause. You could even be feeding the hungry and healing the sick. All of those are good things.

The problem is that the instant something takes the place of God, the moment it becomes an end in itself rather than something to lay at God's throne, it becomes an idol. When someone or something replaces the Lord God in the position of glory in our lives, then that person or thing by definition has become our god.

So to identify some gods, look at what you pursue. Another way to identify the gods at war in your life is to look at what you create.

Remember your commandments.

First: no other gods.

Second: no making other gods to worship.

The profound wisdom of that second commandment is that anything in the world can be hammered into an idol, and therefore can be a false god, if misplaced at the top spot of our affections. It's DIY idolatry: choose from our handy assortment of gods, mix and match, create your own.

When God gave Moses the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, the people waiting below whined because it was taking so long. Moses had left his brother, Aaron, in charge, and the people began clamoring for a god to lead them. They gathered everyone's gold, put it on the fire, and made a golden calf to worship. A little bit ironic, don't you think? The very moment God was telling Moses about having no other gods before him, the people were down below rigging up a god.


Excerpted from Gods at War by Kyle Idleman Copyright © 2013 by Kyle Idleman . Excerpted by permission of ZONDERVAN. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Gods at War: Defeating the Idols that Battle for Your Heart 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 20 reviews.
GobsandGobsofBooks More than 1 year ago
“Idols are not defeated not by being removed but by being replaced.” This is such a profound statement, and one of the most convicting things I took away from Kyle’s second book, Gods at War. The idols in our lives, whatever they may be, can only be conquered if we let Someone Else become our one true addiction. Bet you never thought of it like that, right? Neither had I. Kyle uses the same clear, understandable logic and spiritual truthfulness to reveal first, that all hurting and hardship is spawned from some form of idolatry. (I want to point out right now that while you might think that some forms of idolatry are less “severe” than others, all are equally corrupt and damaging in the eyes of God.) In part 1, Kyle address idolatry in a broader sense before diving into specific idols many of us struggle with. As in Not a Fan, I found the “Case Studies” or real-life examples that Kyle uses in part 1 to be extremely eye-opening and relatable. He uses these examples as well as Scripture to help us 1) become fully aware of the wrongness of idolatry, and 2) get a feel for the idols in our own personal lives. I personally felt the Lord working in my heart after I was submerged into the chapters on the specific idols. I became increasingly uncomfortable and convicted as I recognized idols I’ve harbored, and even became conscious of a couple I wasn’t aware of before. The god of Entertainment. Achievements. Romance. Me (to name a couple). In the past, I’ve downgraded the significance of the war that’s going on inside of me. During the time I was reading this book, my eyes were fully opened to the battlefield that is my heart. Each day is a fight. Each day a god wins. Satisfaction is not found in the victory of foreign gods. Fulfillment only comes when God is placed on the throne of our hearts. I know that’s a hard one to swallow sometimes, because idols can look so good. They can seem so appealing. We’re told by the world that they’ll be all we need, and we’re apt to believe the world. We’re not willing to “take the chance” that God really is all we need. We may know that deep down, but we have our doubts. We don’t want to miss out. But we miss out when we let other gods win the battle day by day. Every day that you devote to something or someone other than God is a day utterly wasted. That’s why they have to be defeated. Replaced. Just as I did with Not a Fan, I finished this book with a new perspective and a deep need for change. The greatest thing is, though, that Gods at War is not just about conviction. It’s about hope, too. “Everyone who drinks this from this water [worships ____] will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him [i.e. sets Me on the throne of their heart] will never thirst again.” –John 4:13
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was interesting how the author traced all of our problems back to idolotry!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Remember ‘not a fan’? The book that rocked the church and shaped the faith of millions? The book that challenged people to step outside their comfort zone and fall in love with God? That book? The pastor who wrote that, Kyle Idleman, is back with a new game changer. His newest offering, ‘gods at war’ focuses on our passive idolatry. We may not bow down to physical objects made of wood and gold, but we forsake our Creator for earthly pleasure, power, and love. We are in the middle of a battle ground, with our hearts fighting over things of this world verses the things of God.  Idleman makes use of testimonies, statistics, studies, anecdotes, and basically everything but the kitchen sink in the book in order to make his point. With each chapter focusing on a different idol (including food, sex, money, family, and entertainment for example), Idleman brings big lofty ideas of sacrifice and commitment and brings them down to the common people’s level.  Kyle Idleman has a true gift with words. He connects with you on a personal level, pulls you in, and doesn’t let you leave the same. This book is quite simply amazing. Five out of five stars. I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This is completely my opinion on the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Such a thought provoking, convicting, funny, Scriputurally based call to action on our own lives! So many idols I had no idea I had lurking around taking the place of God! Loved it and will highly recommend it to everyone! Brought about change for me! Hope it will for you too!
hpz62 More than 1 year ago
In order to honor what the author's message is about in God’s at War, and  to put emphasis in my personal appreciation of it, I must tell you emphatically: Do not buy this book ! But, make sure, without hesitation, to read it cover to cover. I am not only inviting you to read it, I am asking you to do it. And let me tell you why I am pushing you to do so. First of all, its author, Kyle Idleman, a young and well-known pastor, with accuracy and with very simple and yet deep ideas and examples, present us with what I call, some sort of parable, that he makes sure you understand , just as Jesus did with his disciples. Please do not get confused or mislead by the big personas that  recommend this book, validating the high performance and achievement  this Christian writer has conquer. Instead, let yourself in the duty of examining and get acquainted with the message hidden in plain sight in every single page of God’s at War. One of the aspects that stroked me the most, reading Mr. Idleman book, is that I did sensed God talking to me, directly. I could not tough of the men, (the writer) I did not see him, but just God (the Author) and myself. I am sure that even if you have a clear idea of what idolatry is,  you will  understand more of this important issue, after you finished reading this book. I let you to go and start reading this fine piece of Christian literature.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was wonderful to have a fresh perspective on an issue that never really ends; who/what holds our heart. Kyle Idleman offered relatable stories that helped connect the message to any reader while offering biblical truth. Great read and great exercise in reevaluating God's importance above all else.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great book. Simple but not easy. Simple in that Idleman's style is both humorous and enjoyable. Neverthless, it is not easy to read in that nearly every chapter is convicting and forces you to take inventory of your own life, a process that is both difficult and uncomfortable. Not as good as Not A Fan, but I highly recommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you liked Not A Fan, you will love this book. Can't wait to see what the next book will be!
RonD More than 1 year ago
This is the most comprehensive book on idolatry that I have ever read. Often times, Christians today are underestimating the powers of all kinds of idolatries seeking their focus and eventually sucked their faith dry. These so called “gods” would entice and lure all whose hearts are unprepared for war against them. The author not only identified the various ‘gods” but also warned of their powers. He showed the reality of all these by giving real life stories and how these “gods” had damaged them spiritually and mentally.  Although the book suggests a serious battle for our spiritual lives, it offers hope for all. The Almighty God is on our side! God is actively and jealously pursuing men and women to be who He wants them to be!  There are stories of victory! It is possible to stay focus on the true and living God. The “gods’ of idolatries can be defeated!  This book is both inspirational and practical and I enjoyed it thoroughly! I highly recommended to all who desire to go all the way for Jesus!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What dominates your thoughts?  Is God truly at the center of your life, or do other things crowd HIM out?  That's the question Kyke Idleman asks in this book, and he does an extremely good job of getting to those areas of your mind that make you think as to whether things we do are idols in our heart.  God needs to be at the center of everything, and He is worthy of being there, and many things (pride, work, perfectionism, etc) can get in the way and will try to dominate that spot continuously.  Idleman works to make you ponder all aspects of your life, and makes a valiant run at getting people to think about what it is that is truly the god of our life.  It should be, needs to be, and has to be God, or it does not work.  A very good read that I would highly recommend.
wcorym More than 1 year ago
Book Review: Gods At War by Kyle Idleman Mr. Idleman brings to light a subject that we all as Christians have struggled with from time to time. In his book Gods At War he discusses the subject of idols in our modern culture. He helps to identify that idols aren’t always statues of the Old Testament times but rather anything that takes our time and attention from God. An idol truly is something that steals, invades, and can change our relationship with Christ as we allow them to be more important. Idleman discusses the three aspects of pleasure, power, and love in which the idols of food, sex, entertainment, success, money, achievements, romance, family, and self tend to invade. He has filled this book with some interesting evidences combined from first hand experiences, shared life stories, & research that mounts to make one question how truly devoted they are to societies “gods” rather than the real God of their heart. I found myself torn between frustration that we as a culture have become so overly selfish and self destructive and absolutely burdened that what I may be doing could very well be taking the place of God in my own life. The author presents his information in an easy to read format that keep s the reader in tuned and he grips at the very real struggle behind each “god” of our lives. Gods At War is a book that would make a good book club read or also be a great tool to have in counseling someone struggling to put God on the throne of their own heart. This book leaves everyone in a challenge to thoroughly examine one’s own life. One of the quotes I think best sums up Idlemans’s point is “idolatry is the tree from which our sins and struggles grow. Idolatry is always the issue. It’s the trunk of the tree and all other problems are just branches.” Disclosure: I did receive a free review copy of this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers, but was not required to write a positive review.
joeWH More than 1 year ago
Everything about me, everything I do, every relationship I have, everything I hope or dream or wish to become, depends upon what god wins that war. ~ Kyle Idleman Food. Sex. Entertainment. Success. Money. Achievement. Romance. Family. Self…. these things each and every day battle for not only our attention but more importantly our hearts. From the moment we open our eyes each morning we are faced with the challenge of choosing what god or gods we will serve or worship that day. For most of us including myself, we laugh off this thought by saying we would never choose anything or person other than the one and only true God but sadly our lives are saying the opposite. Most of us have heard or even read Exodus 20:3 and know that it clearly states that “You shall have no other gods before me.” In “gods at war”, Kyle states that concerning this verse, “we think of it as a hierarchy; that God is always in first place. But there are no places. God isn’t interested in competing against others or being first among many.” Kyle’s book, “gods at war” has really made me check my own heart and be made aware of the gods that are challenging for the throne. I highly recommend this book to anyone who feels like each day is a battle and I challenge you to allow God to show you what has taken His place. The only relationship God is interested in is one that is exclusive and completely committed. He is not interested in an “open relationship” with you. He won’t consider sharing space on the loveseat of your heart. His throne has only one seat… who or what is currently occupying it?   Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As Kyle Idleman argues, sometimes we think we've got the "Do not commit idolatry" commandment down, but in reality we don't. He shows how so many problems and sins in our lives really comes down to this one issue. If you liked "not a fan" you'll enjoy this book as well. It's well written and certainly accessible, and he uses illustrations and Biblical examples in every chapter. I can't wait to read the next book he writes!
SavvyMomma More than 1 year ago
"Gods At War", written by Kyle Idleman is a new book published by Zondervan that is dedicated to the status of our heart. The tag line of this book is, "Defeating the Idols that Battle for Your Heart", and this is the truest interpretation of what this book is all about. Think about the last 24 hours of your life - what have you given your attention/energy/focus to try to do/make/plan?  "Gods At War" asks you to honestly look at what is battling for the throne of your heart - is God on the throne, or has success, money, or sex taken over? I think that this book has an awesome premise, and especially in our society, one that seriously needs to be discussed. This book challenges you to be more aware of what is battling for your heart, and to be more careful of what we allow to sit on the throne of our hearts.  This book is 240 pages, which makes it a great read for a daily reader. The material that Idleman uses is a compilation of personal testimonies of people who have actually struggled with these modern day idols. I really believe that this book could be a great addition to the library of any Christian - I think that it is always healthy to be more aware of our spiritual life, and this book makes such great observations and truly makes you think! 
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Will you lend me this if you dont mind
berttinman More than 1 year ago
I have been busy so I just started reading this book but it is ok so far.