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Fidei Defensor

Images: Idols or Visual Aides?

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Idols are indeed more than  blocks of wood...

 

From A sermon  by Charles H. Spurgeon  is this introduction to a longer sermon that may be found by searching on  Duck Duck Go for Spurgeon archives sermon # 1339

IDOLS ABOLISHED

NO. 1339

A SERMON

DELIVERED BY C. H. SPURGEON,

AT THE METROPOLITAN TABERNACLE, NEWINGTON.

“Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols?” Hosea 14:8.

IDOLATRY was the great sin of the ten tribes represented by Ephraim. Indeed, it is the sin of the entire human race. When we speak of idolatry we need not think of blocks of wood and stone and men bowing down before them, for our native land swarms with idolaters. Neither need you go into the streets to find them. Stay where you are and look into your own hearts and you shall find idols there. This is the one easily besetting sin of our nature—to turn aside from the living God and to make unto ourselves idols in some fashion or another. For the essence of idolatry is this—to love anything better than God, to trust anything more than God, to wish to have a God other than we have or to have some signs and wonders by which we may see Him, some outward symbol or manifestation that can be seen with the eye or heard with the ear rather than to rest in an invisible God and believe the faithful promise of Him whom eye has not seen nor ear heard. In some form or other this great sin is the main mischief in the heart of man and even in saved men this is one of the developments of remaining corruption. We may very easily make an idol of anything and in many different ways. No doubt many mothers and fathers make idols of their children, and so many husbands and wives idolize each other, and we may even make idols of ministers, even as there were idol shepherds of old. Equally is it certain that many a thoughtful man makes an idol of his intellect, and many another makes an idol of his gold, or even of that little home wherein he enjoys so much content. The ignorant papist holds up his crucifix and wor- ships that and that is his idol. But men who are better instructed often take the Bible and read it and fail- ing to get through the letter into the spirit, they trust in the mere act of Scripture reading and make even the Word itself to become an idol to them through their resting in a mere creed or in bare Bible reading and not pressing through it to spiritual hearty worship of God Himself. Anything, however holy, which comes between us and the personal dealing of our soul with God, as He is revealed in Christ Jesus by faith and love and hope, becomes an idol to us....

Edited by Neighbor

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On 9/15/2018 at 9:52 PM, Fidei Defensor said:

Idol and image (ikon) are not the same thing. An idol is something you worship and pray to as a god. An image in contrast is:

  1. physical likeness or representation of a person, animal, or thing,photographed, painted, sculptured, or otherwise made visible.(Dictionary.com)

By this definition the Cherubim angels on the Ark of the Covenant are an image. An image is representation, just as images of our Lord and God Jesus only are representations but not Him; pictures of His likeness. 

Earlier in your replies, you kept mentioning the bronze serpent  that the Lord instructed Moses to make so that anyone bitten by a serpent would look upon it and recover.   There was a reply that showed how the people fell into worshiping that idol and it had to be destroyed.  You were insistent for an answer and referred to that bronze serpent a lot as a reference to the "Lord ordained it " as in your words, which he did indeed, but the outcome was dreadful as we see .   Now you seem to be silent on this as you had mentioned this repeatedly.   Now, could you make a statement as to this bronze statue.   The meaning of " SPIRIT" has to be grasped and understood in the believers life for sure, if he is to pursue a spiritual life.  

Edited by warrior12

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21 hours ago, Cobalt1959 said:

In other words, you wish to simply dismiss scripture that is plain on the subject.  It has nothing to do with being "under the law."  People often use that as an excuse to dismiss something they think is OK.  Why not just use the same rational to dismiss any kind of sexual or other moral sin?  You can use the exact same logic with that mindset. 

"Homosexuality wrong?  Abortion wrong?  Of course not, We're not under the law!"

Do you dismiss sexual sin and abortion using the same logic?

It's the 2nd commandment you are attempting to dismiss.  Moral commandments are still binding.  They are not optional.

YESIREE.     ALL moral commandments are still binding .   its the meats drinks and days that are optional as pertains to the conscious of the one .

Some may eat , some may not ,  some may hold one day above another some may not ,    THAT is the what pertains to the conscious of each one .

BUT YOU RIGHT COBALT ,  YOU RIGHT .    THE RIGHTEOUSNESS of the law is what is ON OUR HEARTS NOW , to be simply lived out IN CHRIST , never seen as earning salvation

but simply  HE INSIDE each of his own ,  as they walk by HIS SPIRIT .     YOU RIGHT COBALT .   and anything else is them simply trying to make void the law by grace

when in fact ,  IF we simply follow Christ the moral righteousness of the law is fulfilled in us .

OH that folks would return to them bibles and learn the biblical JESUS , the biblical pattern , the letters of the apostles WHO HAD the true HOLY SPIRIT .

THEN would they be sounding out the true gospel , the true JESUS , the true pattern , which conforms not to the world to win ,  BUT RATHER

would reach out to that said world, INSTEAD of trying to  conform TO that said world to gain numbers .   

I think folks have went dead wrong .    instead of understanding what paul meant when he said to the jew I become as a jew

and to those not under the law ,   THEY FORGOT and FORGET something .    YET not as without the law of Christ .

AKA they think we got to become as the gay , or as the sinner , to win the sinner ,   WRONG ANSWER , we don't sin , nor approve of SIN

to WIN .   thems just the wrong fish caught .  WE under the law of CHRIST , which don't transgress , but rather fulfills .

RICKY WARREN destroyed evangelism , OH DEAR that snake in the grass utterly destroyed and worse his book would never have become a number

one seller  < IF FOLKS had not wanted it so .      COBALT ,  OH COBALT this generation is in dire trouble , unlike ANYTHING I have ever seen .   

Edited by frienduff thaylorde

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4 hours ago, warrior12 said:

Earlier in your replies, you kept mentioning the bronze serpent  that the Lord instructed Moses to make so that anyone bitten by a serpent would look upon it and recover.   There was a reply that showed how the people fell into worshiping that idol and it had to be destroyed.  You were insistent for an answer and referred to that bronze serpent a lot as a reference to the "Lord ordained it " as in your words, which he did indeed, but the outcome was dreadful as we see .   Now you seem to be silent on this as you had mentioned this repeatedly.   Now, could you make a statement as to this bronze statue.   The meaning of " SPIRIT" has to be grasped and understood in the believers life for sure, if he is to pursue a spiritual life.  

Goodness , as I was watching that man fish with that pole and out came a shark that swallowed him whole ,     I was like , OH DEAR this is what this new type of evangelism

IS GONNA DO .    its going to TURN on those fishers .     THE SHARK is coming , the weapon with teeth that will come from this is on the rise

and it will come against the true lambs ,  OH but the whore will get burned too .    they got no idea what they seeker friendly will do .

Its bait is simply going to lead all right to the all inclusive peace maker ANTI CHRIST beast who will rage war against the true lambs ,   OH but them ten kings

wont stop their ,  they will a burn that whore too .    Fish with the wrong worms , you catch the wrong fish ,   keep on with that line ,  and soon enough OUT POPS the SHARK . 

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OH they going to find out too little and too late , the peace and unity they trusted in , BRINGS ONLY THE WEAPON .

they lovers , GONNA TURN ON THEM TOO .  

 

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Idols are images made to be worshipped. But even that is not entirely accurate. Pagans made idols of wood, stone, precious metals and etc as representations of the gods they worshipped. For instance, those who worshipped Ashteroth or Ishtar in Ancijet Israel had Ashteroth fertility poles in their fields. The idol object itself isn’t what the person is worshipping, it’s what it represents. For instance in Asia there is worship of the four elements: Earth, Wind, Fire and Water. They have symbols on medallions of these but what they venerate is the actual fire, water, wind and earth. 

Therfore I ask if the images you have are of the Lord Trinity, of Jesus Christ and things in the Holy Bible that are of the True God, them how are those images a problem? If you have an image of our Lord God Jesus Christ, how is that harmful? For the one you really worship and venerate it the Real and Ever Existing Emmanuel who lives in you and you in Him (1 John 4:15), the image or picture of Him is just a representation; a shadow while Jesus is the substance, “These are a shadow of the things to come, but the body that casts it belongs to Christ.” (Colossians 2:17). The Substsnce is who we want, but the shadows arnt harmful. 

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44 minutes ago, Yowm said:

Nor any of the other iconic figures posing as apostles and what-not.

One of the ways they will help unite the people with Rome and one another ,  is going to be through this image like worship ,  contemplative and eucharist movment .

I mean ,   Even the defintions Fidei brought about what an image is ,   IS exactly what GOD said not to DO .  do not make any image OF ANYTHING EVEN IN HEAVEN

earth or sea and bow down to it .   But they think , OH we can make images of JESUS or saints , and bow down ,  WRONG YET AGAIN they are .

I would not marvel a bit , or even be surprised at all,  if fidei is big on contemplative prayer too,  that is all over churches as well .

Folks got no idea what is going on ,   and that its trappings come in many forms .    I hear it all over even christain radio now, this big unity clever talk.

they all about this unity now , all about breaking down barriers , and so on .   YET got no idea IT all came from rick warren and Rome as well.

They just don't realize this .    Either fidei is completely ignorant to it,   or she is trying to get buried with honors and made a saint with colors .

Cause either  way , its all I ever hear fidie speak of ,   either ecumunicalism ,  other churches, TRYING to get us to see the good in them .

LIKE a play right out of that book .   She tries to encourage image worship ,  talks of ecuminalism a lot ,   tries and get us too see the good in those churches , WHO DO such things

Folks ifone is focused on stuff like that ,  THEY are already heavily influenced under it ,  and will only get worse .  And they have their agenda .   Get us to just come together .

Only problem with that is ,   We don't just join in unity like that .    but I could say this all day and night ,  and fidei is not going to listen .  HAS fidei even once

heard a word we have said .  NO ,   digs in only deeper no matter what gets said .   THIS IS a horrible sign .  and a sad one too . 

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2 hours ago, Cobalt1959 said:

They are a problem, because as has already been determined, they are forbidden by scripture.  That should end the argument right there.

The images you are talking about have absolutely no purpose unless they are being used for worship.  I don't have these things in my house.  I don't need them.  They are forbidden anyway and I don't need a Dollar Tree lithograph of Jesus on my wall to worship Him.  They are bogus beyond that, because as I have already pointed out, there is no way they can be accurate to any degree at all.  No one knows what God, and/or Jesus look like anyway.  Why waste so much time attempting to legitimize something that is not allowed?

Even if the image is of the Lord Himself? I believe the heart and spirit of “have no graven images (idols),” is missed. The Israelites were going into a pagan society in Canaan and they had already made the golden calf when Moses was on Mount Sinai. I believe the spirit of the Law (“make no idols,”) was to keep the Israelites from following other gods. The Lord said nothing about “make no images of me, The I AM.” 

We must not follow the letter (legalism) but the spirit (freedom and truth), “He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant--not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” (2 Corinthians 3:6) and, “God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24). 

And to follow the law of Moses as you have advocated is forbidden by the New Covenant, “When God speaks of a "new" covenant, it means he has made the first one obsolete. It is now out of date and will soon disappear,” (Hebrews 8:13), “Therefore Christ is the mediator of a new covenant, so that those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance, now that He has died to redeem them from the transgressions committed under the first covenant,” (Hebrews 9:15), “But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises,” (Hebrews 8:6), “The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law,” (1 Corinthians 15:56), “Therefore no one will be justified in His sight by works of the Law. For the Law merely brings awareness of sin,” (Romans 3:20), “because the Law brings wrath. And where there is no law, there is no transgression,” (Romans 4:15), “But sin, seizing its opportunity through the commandment, produced in me every kind of covetous desire. For apart from the Law, sin is dead,” (Romans 7:8), “do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose,” (Galatians 2:21), and “For if you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God's grace,” (Galatians 5:4). 

It is not about following commands or laws, but having faith in Jesus, “” () and having a loving relationship with Him (Matthew 22:36-41) who is the Lord God (Ginosko, Epignosko) and knowing Him (Phillipians 3:8). I recently was reading a Theology book and was furious because it presented Jesus as Judge in our Judaical system and made salvation seem impersonal. The truth is that God personally paid our debt of sin with His flesh and blood and death on the cross and He did it out of love (John 3:16, 1 John 4:8). Its not about laws, it’s about love and faith and grace, it’s anout Jesus who is source of all three, for Jesus came not with the law, “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” (John 1:17).  

The Spirit of the Law “have no idols” was to have no other gods but the Lord who is Jesus (Romans 10:9, Phillipians 2:1–1). If the images or paintings or symbols you own are of the Lord Jesus then the law isn’t even violated because they point to the True Triune God. But more importantly we arnt under t the law but under grace (Acts 15:11),  and the Law if you folloed puts a person under a curse, “For all who rely on the works of the law are under a curse, as it is written: "Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law,” (Galatians 3:10) and worse It leads to falling from grace and being cut off from Christ, “For if you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God's grace.” (Galatians 5:4). 

I for one will not nullify the grace of God (Galatians 2:21). I trust in Jesus’ all sufficient sacrifice and that His New Covenant is superior and has put an end to the Old Covenant which could never save in the first place (Romans 3:20). 

Edited by Fidei Defensor

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One of the reasons images are discarded (iconoclasm) is the idea is that our Lord Jesus who is the same Lord of the Old Testament with the Father and Holy Spirit, is to be different from the false gods that need images or idols in their likenes. The Lord instead made His children His images (Genesis 1:26-27). The Lord wants to say to the world I am the I AM and I am not like gods of stone, cedar, and glass; I AM the Living God who made stone, cedar and glass. 

The Apostles even said this, “Being then God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man.” (Acts 17:29) 

Likewise the Lord god didn’t want a temple building:

“However, the Most High does not live in houses made by human hands. As the prophet says:

49“ ‘Heaven is my throne,

and the earth is my footstool.

What kind of house will you build for me?

says the Lord.

Or where will my resting place be?

50Has not my hand made all these things?’ l

51“You stiff-necked people! Your hearts and ears are still uncircumcised. You are just like your ancestors: You always resist the Holy Spirit!” (Acts 7:48-51) which cross references with the Lord’s wishes that He spoke to King David via Nathan  in 2 Samuel 7:1-53, 1 Chronicles 17:1-23, because all the other false gods dwelt in temples like Athenia, hence why the Lord dwelt instead in tents and now dwells in us Christians (1 Corinthians 3:16, Colossians 1:27, 1 John 4:15). God wants to say I go with you everywhere unlike the false gods that make people go to temples in cities and mountaintops. 

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