"Why do people choose the substitute over God himself? Probably the most important reason is that it obviates accountability to God. We can meet idols on our own terms because they are our own creations. They are safe, predictable, and controllable; they are, in Jeremiah's colorful language, the 'scarecrows in a cornfield' (10:5). They are portable and completely under the user's control. They offer nothing like the threat of a God who thunders from Sinai and whose providence in this world so often appears to us to be incomprehensible and dangerous . . . [People] need face only themselves. That is the appeal of idolatry."

- David F. Wells