This commandment follows up the command to have no other gods before the Creator. He then follows this up with a command that He alone should be worshiped and then goes on to define what worship is. Our worship must be directed by the power of faith, not the power of images or imaginations. Therefore, we are not to bow down to or worship images or statues of even God himself. Since God is spiritual, no material representation can possibly resemble Him. A.W. Tozer said, "Do not try to imagine God or you will have an imaginary God."
Part of this commandment is to prevent Israel from identifying the true God with any created thing. To identify God with any created thing is just one step from thinking of God in terms of that image. It would be creating God in the image of His creation. As one preacher put it: To create your own image of God is to make a small God.
So what is an idol? An idol is anything that takes the focus off God and puts it on something else. With that in mind, what do you worship? To what do you bow down? What is God's competition with your life? Affections? Resources? Always be on guard against anything that pulls you away from God. Tear away (painfully if necessary) the idols from your heart, and devote yourself to God.
Jesus made it very clear what God expects from us in worship. In John 4.23-24 He said, "Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks."
We must worship the Father truthfully. That means we must worship Him as He is and not how we want Him to be. Now, God is different to different people at different times in their lives. But that doesn't mean that's all He is. What is your image of God?
Is He harsh, cold, and distant? Then you don't understand the love and mercy of God.
Or maybe he's a blonde, blue-eyed Jesus, who carries little lambs in his arms. Well, the Romans didn't crucify people for carrying lambs around.
Is he easy-going; doesn't really care too much about sin, because he'll just forgive you no matter what? Then you've missed out on the holiness of God.
I can't define who God is. He is above and beyond anything I can imagine or put into words. I don't worship a small God.