"Who then is like me? Let him proclaim it." "Is there any God besides me? No, there is no other Rock; I know not one. All who make idols are nothing, and the things they treasure are worthless." "Remember these things... Return to me, for I have redeemed you." (Isa 44:7a, 8b-9a, 21a, 22b)
Idolatry: It's so easy to make something related to God (even church success, passion for ministry) as more heartfelt than God himself. This turns a good thing into an ultimate thing, a god thing. Thus, anything and all good things can be an idol. [Previously: Stupid Idols and the Predicting God (Isa 42:22-23).]
Quotes on the love of God (Isa 43:4):
"The love of God for man is so great that it cannot constrain [us]... Divine will always will submit itself ... even to revolts of human will [in order] to bring it to a free consent. . . . God is a beggar of love waiting at the soul’s door without ever daring to force it." Vladimir Lossky.
"Grace ... by its very nature, confers independence on the object of its love. It gives, compelling no return ... it liberates rather than enslaves, strengthens rather than weakens free volition ... 'the service of God is perfect freedom.'" Martin Thornton.