Continuously in the Old Testament, we see Israel choosing to abandon God for the pagan worship of idols. One generation of Israelites may be totally abandoned to God, but the next generation totally abandons Him. God uses a special comparison for His chosen people that have chosen to worship idols instead of the Creator. God labels such people prostitutes. And, that is what the people are. If a man's wife chooses to love another man, that wife is at least an adulterer and at most a prostitute. If God's chosen choose to act the same, they can be labeled nothing different.
What are the idols of modern man? The most prevalent idol is entertainment, viewed through such mediums as television, music, movies, and sports. There is also the pursuits of money and fame, the love of family that is so excessive that it excludes God, and new age, spiritual approaches to life. Two other damaging idols include sexual immorality and pride. Regardless of what idol we choose to bow before, the Bride of Christ has prostituted itself for cheap gain rather than eternal love.
In the modern church, we have removed God as our priority and reduced His involvement in our lives. Instead of offering the choice and first parts of our lives, we offer Him our scraps and leftovers, as if the king of the universe were no more than some celestial pet. We have prostituted ourselves before the altars of complacency and convenience for far too long. We have fooled ourselves into thinking that we can achieve the best of both worlds by forming some capitalist compromise with the world, while still being able to worship our Father and the Provider of our faith in the measure He deserves.
Meanwhile, we continue to suffer for our ignorance. We continue to question why God could be so unfaithful as to not provide revival in the American church for over 100 years, while we continue to offer Him our leftovers and give our choicest sacrifices to other gods.
The book of James offers a vision of true religion as one which remains unstained by the world. This is not to say that we should not be in the world, but our love and our hope should not be the world.
To measure the influence the world has over our lives, we need only to compare our time spent in loving relationship with God over the time spent on other pursuits. If we call ourselves Christians, but our time is spent more on other pursuits than on God, then we are guilty of adultery and idolization. We have prostituted ourselves on the altar of worthless pursuits and left our truest love holding our empty promises.
There is only one solution to our infidelity. We must repent of our prostitution and give God all of us or leave Him for our real love, which is ourselves. God deserves nothing less than all or nothing. There is no fence to sit on. There is no compromise to embrace. We can lie to ourselves, but we can never fool God. The day is coming when we will be held accountable for our actions or inactions. On that day, we will be thrown, naked and shivering, into the light of God's scrutiny where our prostitutions and idolatrous liaisons will be revealed and judged.