What types of idolatry are there?

Share |

There are two types of idolatry: Open and concealed.

  1. Open idolatry can be observed or seen. Such idolatry is:

    • the type practiced by pagans, such as worshiping statues or pictures of false gods, worshiping heavenly bodies, animals, etc. Worshiping earthly rulers is also a form of open idolatry. Satan worship is an especially gross form of idolatry.

      Assignment: Consider: what type of people-worship is practiced today, and what kinds of needs does it satisfy? Why is it idol-worship?

      Rom.1:22-23: Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things.

      Assignment: Read Ex. 32: the golden calf, Ps. 115:3-8 and Is. 44:15-19.

    • the worship of angels, the Virgin Mary, saints, pictures, holy places, etc. This type of worship is practiced by certain churches of external

      Matt. 4:10: Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve.

      Rev. 19:10: I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not; I am thy fellow- servant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus; worship God, for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

      Is. 63:16: Doubtless thou art our Father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and Israel acknowledge us not. Thou, O Lord, art our Father, our Redeemer; thy name is from everlasting.

      Ex. 20:4-5: Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them.

      Assignment: Discuss: What are some groups of this type within the visible Christian Church?

    • those who deny that God is a Triune God. They may confess that there is only one God, but they refuse to confess that Christ is true God and that the Holy Ghost is true God. All those who call God “mother” belong to this group, because they deny the God of the Bible, who is Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

      Assignment: Consider what religions belong to this group.

  2. Concealed idolatry: This type of idolatry takes place in a person´s heart and does not involve outward worship. A person practicing this type of idolatry fears, loves and trusts some creature as if it were God. Some types of hidden idolatry are:

    • trusting in one´s possessions, wealth, money and material things.

      Job 31:24-25, 28 : If I have made gold my hope, or have said to the fine gold, thou art my confidence; if I have rejoiced because my wealth was great, and because my hand had gotten much..... this also were an iniquity to be punished by the judge, for I should have denied the God that is above.

      Assignment: Read Luke 12:15-21: the rich man trusted in his crops; Luke 16:19: trust in a sumptuous life.

      Luther considered a person´s possessions to be the most common false god.

    • trust in power and authority, in one´s position, in one´s profession.

    • trust in one´s self or in others.

      Ps. 146:3,4: Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

      Assignment: Read what happened to Goliath 1 Sam. 17, to Nebuchadnezzar Dan. 4:27-29 and to Peter Matt. 26:33-35, 69-75. Read what the Bible says about one´s own wisdom Jer. 9:23, one´s own righteousness Luke 18:9-12, the idolization of one´s self Ps. 14:1.

    • d) being a slave to some lust.

      Assignment: Discuss; What does a person have as his god when he lusts after gambling, alchohol, honor and glory and power and authority? When can the opinion of the majority or the latest fashions be false gods? Our work or our hobbies can also become false gods if they revent us from hearing God´s Word. Cite some examples.

    • trusting that one´s fate is determined by the stars (astrology, horoscopes), believing in fortune telling (palm reading, looking into a crystal ball) withcraft, etc.

      Assignment: Discuss: Why is there a contradiction between astrology and true faith? Read: Is. 47:11-14.

No comments:

Post a Comment