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IDOLATRY

"Idolatry" is ~ The Betrayal of GOD.

Isaiah 42:8

“I am the LORD: that is my name:
and my glory will I not give to another,
neither my praise to graven images.”
Betrayal:

disloyalty, treachery, bad faith, faithlessness, falseness, duplicity, deception, double-dealing;

breach of faith, breach of trust, stab in the back;

double-cross, sellout;

Some may ask, as long as it doesn't hurt anyone else, what's so terrible? I’ll tell you what is so terrible?!
Even today, we see ‘intelligent’ people who worship false gods,
or who deny GOD’S existence entirely.
In fact, the ‘intelligent’ (so-called) seem even more likely to do this!

Usually, the idolater believes that the idol is a sort of vessel for the invisible spirit of the god they worship.
For instance, the people who bought, 'idols of Artemis' (Acts 19) didn’t all believe their idol actually was "Artemis", rather, it served as a focus for worship and devotion. That doesn’t make it any less false or foolish, but it does explain how people could worship what are obviously dead, unresponsive objects.
In fact, prophets like; Isaiah (Isaiah 40) and Elijah (I Kings 18) mocked idolatry based on the nonexistence and powerlessness of false gods.
( But this polemic goes back (not only) to the time of Moses (Deuteronomy 32:21) but all the way back to Abram and before, to the time of ( the fallen angels and satan.) (Joshua 24:2 says that Abraham and his father ( Terah, worshiped idols.)
IDOLATRY [is]
Nothing New Under The Sun.

Well, believe it or not, the most common warning about sin in Scripture does not deal with lying, gossip, adultery, stealing, or murder. The most common sin in all of Scripture that we’re told to avoid, reject, and move away from is: [ idolatry. ]

And that's not just “(Asherah poles)” in the Old Testament either...

Idolatry Definition: noun.

Worship of idols.

idolization, fetishization, fetishism, idol worship, adulation, adoration, reverence, veneration, glorification, lionization, hero-worshiping

"the prophets railed against idolatry"

extreme admiration, love, or reverence for something or someone.

"we must not allow our idolatry of art to obscure issues of political significance"

In fact, in the New Testament, 1 John 5:21 says:

“Little children, guard yourselves from idols.”

So apparently idolatry is still trying to work its way into our lives and distract us from worshiping and obeying GOD.

Idolatry is not just a pagan issue.

It is not just an Old Testament or Jewish issue. It is a human issue.

Could it be that a 12-inch tall piece of wood or bronze can do something bad to us?

Or is it that we do something awful to ourselves when we place adoration and attention

to other things, instead of GOD?

When it comes to idolatry, the danger is not in an item…(( it is in [ us.] ))

In a fallen world, people constantly seek things they can worship, even though The CREATOR is before us in plain view.

We are all looking for something to worship and serve, (Believer and Un-believer alike.) Be it something external, like an object or person, (or), ourselves -- "Self Idolatry" Self-idolatry Thanks to social media, people ( young and old ) - take constant photos of themselves in a kind of self-worship. —extravagant admiration for or devotion to oneself.

Idols come easy, but go hard.

There is a consistent theme about idolatry throughout the Scriptures—and in our lives as well.

In 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10, the Bible describes our new life, our new birth in Christ in this way: “You turned to GOD from idols to serve the living and true GOD.”

Of course, in comparison to a dead and false idol, serving a living GOD should be easy.

Idols Know No Boundaries -

Does becoming a worshiper of the one true GOD mean we no longer have to contend with the issue of idolatry? I wish it were that simple...

Everything that is not of GOD raises itself up against GOD, even in the life of a Christian.

So we constantly have idol pop-ups in our lives. We have to cast them down, but they will be there as long as we live here on earth.

What about leaders? Does leadership mean we get an exemption from the threat of idolatry in our lives?

Uh… no.

Some of us have “ministry idolatry” in our lives—things that we pursue in the place of GOD.

Idolatry is not just a pagan issue.

If you’re going to be a faithful pastor or a faithful Bible teacher in your ministry context, you’re going to have to recognize the draw that we all have toward the idols of the world.

Every culture creates idols, and we must be vigilant at turning from them, even destroying them.

Be Troubled By Your Own Idols -

Acts 17 tells the story of Paul in Athens, and how his spirit was “troubled within him when he saw that the city was full of idols” (Acts 17:16). It is a fascinating passage that we often miss. Are our spirits troubled within us because of the idols of our culture?

I’m not referring only to the idols “out there.” This isn’t just about our neighbors’ idols. Sports teams, athletes, entertainers, cars, collectibles, etc... We must recognize that we’re all drawn to some of those idols. And the people in our churches are all drawn to those idols, as well.

Seeing people trapped in idolatry should inspire compassion for their souls, as they are trapped in foolishness. But it also should spark detest for anything that would set itself up against the one true GOD.

Pastors, ( PLEASE ) Preach Against Idols ! ! !

Idols don’t leave on their own.

In the power of the gospel, we have to tear them down-- to destroy them.

We need to remove them from our lives and depart from them.

{{ Pastors need to identify and preach against idols. }}

As our love for GOD increases, our tolerance for idolatry SHOULD, and MUST DECREASE.

Man cannot absolve your sins ! Let me repeat that ~ MAN - CANNOT - ABSOLVE - YOUR SINS, PERIOD.

That means not [ ANY ] one - Priest, Rabbi, statue, carved or cast, hewn or otherwise.

The Mother of JESUS, is not to be worshiped OR prayed to.

She is NOT anyone's Intercessor.

She is ( NOT ) the queen of heaven.

Jeremiah 7:18

“The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger.”

That is IDOLATRY. That is what is being described here in this verse. ( I am sorry that the RCC ever taught that.)

It is a false teaching.

A false worship.

1 Timothy 2:5

“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;”

The Bible is absolutely clear that we are to worship GOD alone.

The only instances of anyone other than GOD receiving worship in the Bible are false gods, which are satan and his demons.

All followers of the Lord GOD refuse worship. Peter and the apostles refused to be worshiped (Acts 10:25–26; 14:13–14). The holy angels refuse to be worshiped (Revelation 19:10; 22:9). The response is always the same, “Worship GOD!”

The Roman Catholic Church attempt to “bypass” these [clear] Scriptural principles, by claiming they do not “worship” Mary or saints, but rather that they only “venerate” Mary and the saints. *Definition of - "VENERATE": regard with great respect; revere. Synonyms include: revere, reverence, respect, worship, adulate, hallow, deify, idolize, hold sacred, exalt, honor, esteem.

Using a different word does not change the essence of what is being done.

A definition of “venerate” is “to regard with respect or reverence.”

You [ cannot ] worship GOD [ through ] her either. NO !

Many Catholics use images of Mary and/or the saints as “good luck charms.” *Definition of "CHARM" : the power or quality of giving delight or arousing admiration. Control or achieve by or as if by magic. *Definition of "MAGIC": the power of apparently influencing the course of events by using mysterious or supernatural forces. Necromancy, devilry, divination, sortilege, malediction, voodoo, hoodoo, sympathetic magic, white magic, witching, witchery.

Any cursory reading of the Bible will reveal this practice as blatant idolatry,

(Exodus 20:4–6; 1 Corinthians 12:1–2; 1 John 5:21).

Burying a Joseph statue in hopes of selling your home

(and countless other practices) is idolatry.

Nowhere in the Bible are we told to revere anyone but GOD alone.

John 14:6

“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:

no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

''Pride'' is truly equivalent to idolatry...

For the main root principle of idolatry consists in man’s acknowledgement of something existing in its own right apart and separate from GOD’S holiness.

ALL DEVOTION AND REVERENCE BELONG TO HIM. Who? GOD ALMIGHTY.

( Not ) your favorite supermodel, or Nascar driver, sports figure, political Polemic, Rodeo clown, entertainer, car, guitar, or anyone, or anything else. True Worship belongs to GOD ! Worship is “to give honor, homage, reverence, respect, adoration, praise, or glory to a Superior Being.”

GOD demands worship because HE and HE alone is worthy of it.

HE is the only being that truly deserves worship.

He requests that we acknowledge His greatness, His power, and His glory.

Revelation 4:11 says, “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.”

GOD created us, and HE will not be usurped.

“You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your GOD, am a jealous GOD, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me” (Exodus 20:3-5).

We must understand that GOD’S jealousy [is not] the sinful envy that we experience, born out of pride.

It is a [holy and righteous] jealousy that cannot allow the glory due only to HIM

to be given to another.

GOD expects us to worship Him as an expression of reverence and thanksgiving to Him.

But GOD also expects us to be obedient to Him.

He wants not only for us to love Him; He wants us to act justly toward each other,

to show love and compassion to others.

In this way, we present ourselves to Him as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to HIM.

This glorifies GOD and is our “reasonable service” (Romans 12:1).

When we worship with an obedient heart and an open and repentant spirit,

GOD is glorified, Christians are purified, the church is edified, and the lost are evangelized. These are all the elements of true worship.

Acts Chapter 17

28 For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.

29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.

30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:

31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by [that] man whom he hath ordained; [whereof] he hath given assurance unto all [men], in that he hath raised him from the dead.

1 John 5:21

Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.