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The Second Commandment: No False Worship

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The Second Commandment forbids false worship in the form of idols because it misrepresents God and misleads men into idolatry.

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Introduction:
What is your definition of God?
Super Soul Sunday is a segment where Oprah Winfrey she asks leading spiritual leaders about what they think about God. How would you define God, Oprah asks. Here are the responses:
What is your definition of God?
“God is the highest place within each and every one else. It is our divine self”
“The source of you.”
Debbie Ford “I define god as an energy. A spiritual energy. It has no denomination. It has no judgments....a energy or force greater than myself.”
“My definition of god. God is not only the Alpha and Omega, but a friend. A confidante. He is a buddy. He is a lover of my soul. That is my definition of god.”
“All encompassing love that is the source of all, the reality of all, and the being through which I am.”
“God is beyond all the forms of life. But also indwells every form of life as their essence. He is both beyond and within.”
“My definition of God is the ever present essence of love.”
“God is love”
“God to me is mystical law. Because law is the nature of the universe. It is the order of things.”
“All that is. Everything. Breath. Life. It’s Everything. God is everything.”
Deepak Chopra, “God is the evolutionary impulse of the universe. God is infinite creativity. Infinite love. Infinite compassion.”
One thing that all these responses have in common is this: they all define God according to their own definition and that is why God has given us the Second Commandment.
If we want to know what God is like, we need not look to Youtube, or Oprah to find your definition of god, but I would encourage you to look to God’s own self-disclosure revealed in the pages of Holy Scriptures.
Today, we will be looking at the second commandment which forbids false worship.
Last week we looked at the first commandment where it forbids us from worshipping a false God, the second commandment forbids us from worshipping the One true God falsely.
Whereas the first commandment is concerned about who we worship, the second commandment deals with how we worship.
If we are going to honor and obey God, we cannot domesticate god made in our own image. We cannot make up a god in our own imagination. Or to put it in another preacher’s own words,
God not only cares who we worship, but how we worship. To honor God is to only worship Him in spirit and truth. We cannot domesticate god and make him in our own image when we are made in his image.
“The first commandment deals with worshipping the right God, the second has to deal with worshipping God the right way”
“Whereas the first commandment forbids us to worship false gods, the second commandment forbids us to worship the true God falsely.”
The first commandment deals with false gods, the second commandment deals with false worship.
In our time this morning, we will look three reasons why God forbids and hates false worship, so that we can worship God rightly according to His revealed Word.
I. Why does God forbid false worship?
II. How can we worship God truly?
Scripture Reading:
If some other man approached my wife, it is not wrong for me to be jealous for her devotion.
Is it wrong to have pictures of Christ? Is it wrong to wear cross necklaces? Is it wrong to have statues in your house?
“The ancient Egyptians served a myriad of deities personified in nature, such as animals, celestial bodies, and other natural phenomena.” ESV Archaelogy Bible
Exodus 20:4–6 ESV
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or 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 or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
Exodus 20:4–6 ESV
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or 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 or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
Why did God give this commandment?

I. False Worship Limits God (v. 4)

“You shall not make for yourself a carved image”
Carved image is to something that was made from a material source. This commandment is basic theology 101.
The Lord does not have a physical form and therefore is not permanently localized. An idol localizes the omnipresent and invisible God to a visible form and present location.
I grew up in an Asian culture where sometimes you would go to a local temple and there would be a statue of Buddha. People would offer incense there or offer some type of fruit.
Ex. Jesus may look more Filipino than White.
Carved images misleads men.
Carved images misrepresent creation.
Do not worship false gods.
I’m sure in Thailand, there are many temples that people go to to pay respect to some type of deity.
Or maybe you grew up in the Philippines where you went to a Roman Catholic Church. And in the Church, there is Jesus on the crucifx. There are pictures and statues of saints all throughout the church.
He is jealous (because he requires exclusive and supreme devotion)
The problem with these statues is that it ascribes these inanimate objects with
He is judge
The Reformers rejected idols and statues because people begin to view these objects with reverence that had some type of spiritual power within them.
Israel did the same thing. They wanted to localize and materialize God.
He is loving
Exodus 32:1–4 ESV
When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people gathered themselves together to Aaron and said to him, “Up, make us gods who shall go before us. As for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.” So Aaron said to them, “Take off the rings of gold that are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.” So all the people took off the rings of gold that were in their ears and brought them to Aaron. And he received the gold from their hand and fashioned it with a graving tool and made a golden calf. And they said, “These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!”
Exodus 32:5–6 ESV
When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it. And Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord.” And they rose up early the next day and offered burnt offerings and brought peace offerings. And the people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play.
Why was this a violation of the second commandment? Because it made God localized in a calf. It made the invisible God an object. And it made the people worship God falsely because it also led them to engaging in immorality.
Israel’s temptation was to limit the omnipresent invisible God to a domesticated visible god of their own making.
Think about Nadab and Abihu.
And Israel would face this temptation throughout their history because of the sounding cultures that had a god for everything. Egyptians made gods of the animals.
“Remember that the Israelites had been living with the Egyptians, who worshiped many gods, nearly all of which they represented in the form of animals. The god Horus had the head of a falcon, the god Anubis had the head of a jackal, and so on.” Ryken
“A holy jealousy is one that guards someone’s rightful possession. The most obvious example is the love between a husband and wife. No husband who truly loves his wife could possibly endure seeing her in the arms of another man. It would make him intensely jealous, and rightly so!” Ryken
God’s creation is not an accurate representation of Him. Creation displays His Glory, but God is not His creation.
Sin is iniquity, a perversion of worship and God.
A family is covenantal, so a bad example is not only passed on, but sin.
God will hold fathers responsible for their sins.
Acts 17:24–25 ESV
The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.
“When you make a graven image of God, you fix God. An image is limited. God is unlimited. An image is local. God is universal. An image is temporal. God is eternal. An image is material. God is spiritual. When you make a graven image, it distorts God.” Vines
But this also applies not only to physical images, but also mental images of God. We can construct mental images of objects or persons by which we think will bring fulfillment.
Idolatry is when we make god in our own image. God has made us in his image.
“Idolatrous images are mental before they are metal, and every untrue, unworthy concept of God is an idol” John Stott.
So whenever we try to picture God in our mind, we are breaking the second commandment.
The Shack was a popular book a while back because people say they can relate to the story. But the book and the movie is a violation of the second commandment because how is God the Father portrayed? As an African American woman. How is God the Son portrayed? As a Jewish man. How is the Holy Spirit portrayed? As an Asian woman.
Now does the Bible picture God as a woman? or the Holy Spirit as a woman?
This is heretical because it shows the invisible God as a mere woman.
This is heretical because it shows the invisible God as a mere woman.
Christian—Our worship is primarily spiritual before it is physical. Our worship comes from the heart before it comes on the lips. Therefore we cannot limit God to a material or external object.
Christian—Our worship is primarily spiritual before it is physical. Our worship comes from the heart before it comes on the lips. Therefore we cannot limit God to a material or external object.
“God is to be adored in the heart, not painted to the eye.” Thomas Watson.
I believe that statues, crucifixes, prayer beads, pictures of Christ should be rejected if you ascribe some type of spiritual power of significance to them.
I even believe that mental images of Christ presented in movies may also be a borderline violation of this commandment.
Just think about the crucifix. People feel as if Christ is there in there midst when these see a crucifix of Christ.
Why does that misrepresent God?
Well, it only show’s Christ humanity, not deity.
It shows a suffering Christ, not a victorious or conquering Christ.
It shows that he is still on the cross, and not resurrected and seated at the right hand of God.
It limits God.
Non-Christian—To make up your own ideas of God is to violate the second commandment. You cannot know God unless He reveals Himself to you by His Word and His Spirit. Therefore, pray that God would make himself known to you by His Word and His Spirit.
We see by believing and hearing.
Transition: Graven or carved images not only limit God, but they misrepresent God. Idolatry takes place when you make a god in your own image, and when you also misrepresent who God is.

II. False Worship Misrepresents God (v. 4)

Graven or carved images not only limit God, but they misrepresent God. Idolatry takes place when you make a god in your own image, and when you also misrepresent who God is.
Exodus 20:4 ESV
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or 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.
The pagans would worship the sun, moon, and stars. Or they would worship the animals or the sea creatures.
We may not worship the gods in the celestial bodies, but people use language like we should care for mother earth or get rid of cars because we are killing mother earth.
“The ancient Egyptians served a myriad of deities personified in nature, such as animals, celestial bodies, and other natural phenomena.” ESV Archaelogy Bible
As mentioned last week, we are just renaming the the idols. Idols are what occupies the supreme place in your heart.
We may not worship the animals, but
Israel was not to worship God in this way because God is the One who made the heavens, the earth, and the seas. Yet, this was a problem for Israel.
People worshipped the bronze serpent of Moses (2 Kg. 18:4). People worshipped Gideon’s Ephod. People worshipped two bulls in Jeroboam’s time (1 Kg. 12:28-33), and they would be exiled for their idolatry. Even in exile, people were tempted to worship the statue of Nebuchadnezzar, yet Daniel and his three friends refused to bow down to the statue.
When we make a carved image, we domesticate god to our own liking. It is an aid to worship some would argue. It is just easier to see God. When we do that, we often end up worshipping his creation rather than God.
He is misrepresented when his creation is worshipped rather than the Creator.
Romans 1:22–23 ESV
Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.
Romans 1:20–22 ESV
For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools,
A golden calf misrepresented God because it confused the Creator God as part of his creation.
Don’t you think it would be absurd if I loved my wedding ring more than I loved my wife?
It would be absurd for a man to bow down before a painting of a King when the King is
Would it be absurd to bow down to a picture of the King when the King is present?
Don’t you think it would be absurd for a person to bow down before the painting of a king when the King is present?
Would it be absurd to adore a house rather than the builder of the house?
Don’t you think it would be absurd if a man loved
In the same way, to bow down to God’s creation is to worship God’s gifts over God Himself. It is to worship the painting over the Painter. It is to worship the building over the Architect.
A golden calf, a bull, a star, a bronze serpent, or whatever object or thing or person does not communicate the attributes or true character or nature of God.
God is immortal. God is omnipresent. God is omniscient. God is independent. God is not limited by His creation.
Christian—This is why you need to study theology because if you don’t, you may worship God wrongly.
When God spoke to His people, there was no visible form of God.
Deuteronomy 4:11–12 ESV
And you came near and stood at the foot of the mountain, while the mountain burned with fire to the heart of heaven, wrapped in darkness, cloud, and gloom. Then the Lord spoke to you out of the midst of the fire. You heard the sound of words, but saw no form; there was only a voice.
God does not give us an image of himself because He is not confined to his his creation and cannot be put into a box.
Deuteronomy 4
That is why if we want to worship God properly, we must hear his voice. God communicates to us and he tells us how he is to be worshipped.
This is why in most protestant churches, the center for the church is not a crucifix or an altar, or some stature, but it is a pulpit. The Reformers believed that we come to know God not through icons or statues, but through revelation.
The RCC response was, “well, the lay people are ignorant.” The protestant response was teach them. Teach them to read. Teach to hear. Teach them to listen!
The Bible tells us no one has ever seen God.

QUESTION 96. What does God require in the second commandment?

That we in no wise make any image of God, nor worship Him in any other way than He has commanded in His word.

Christian—If you want to worship God rightly, then make sure you are worshipping Him according to Revelation and His revealed Word.
Church—This is why we don’t have statues or pictures of Jesus throughout our building. We have a pulpit. Because faith comes not by seeing, but by hearing. And it is in hearing, we see spiritually.
Non-Christian—When you make up your own definition of God, you violate this commandment. If you say God doesn’t really care about who I love, as long as we’re committed, you misrepresent God.
God doesn’t care about what we do with our bodies, you misrepresent God.
God is love and He would never send anyone to Hell, you misrepresent God.
God is a judge and He will send you to Hell, but never talk about the love or mercy of God, you misrepresent God.
You shall not bow down to them or serve them.
Bowing down refers to prostrating oneself before a deity. It is an act of homage and reverence. Serving in that context was providing some offering to appease some god.
Principle: You will serve what you worship. If it is a career, you will spend all your time at work. If it is a position, you will do whatever it takes to achieve that position. If it is a person, you will do whatever it takes to get that person’s approval and acceptance.
That is what the Israelites did. They made a feast to the calf. They offered sacrifices and they engaged in immorality. They domesticated god.
Psalm 115:4–7 ESV
Their idols are silver and gold, the work of human hands. They have mouths, but do not speak; eyes, but do not see. They have ears, but do not hear; noses, but do not smell. They have hands, but do not feel; feet, but do not walk; and they do not make a sound in their throat.
You shall not bow down to these gods because these gods did not save or deliver you from Egypt. The idols and graven images have no power within them. And they misrepresent God.
Christian—This command forbids worship of material objects, whether it is a person or thing. An idol can also be something you can construct in your own mind where you think that thing or that person can deliver you.
Education—cannot save you or deliver you or satisfy you. If I only get that college degree, my life will be made right. I will get the job I always wanted. I will marry the person I always wanted, etc.
Person—a person or relationship
Church—Regulative Principle of Worship simply states that corporate worship of God is to be formed upon specifics directions of Scripture either explicitly or implicitly. If Scripture forbids it, then that means we are forbidden to that. If Scripture allows it, then it means we are allowed to do that.
So in Scripture, we see that we are commanded to pray, to sing, to listen and hear God’s word, to give, to offer thanksgiving and praise, to gather regularly. That is why we do the things we do in Sunday.
But nowhere in the Bible do we see we should fall down in holy laughter, or handle snakes, or have a drama production instead of a sermon when God’s people gather.
God’s word must be our final guide in the worship of God.
Transition: False worship limits God, misrepresents God, and it also offends God.

III. False Worship Offends God (vv. 5-6)

If you read the OT, many people died because they worshipped God falsely. God judged people for worshipping Him falsely. For example, the sons of Aaron were struck down by God because they offered unauthorized fire in the Tabernacle:
Leviticus 10:1–3 ESV
Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it and laid incense on it and offered unauthorized fire before the Lord, which he had not commanded them. And fire came out from before the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord. Then Moses said to Aaron, “This is what the Lord has said: ‘Among those who are near me I will be sanctified, and before all the people I will be glorified.’ ” And Aaron held his peace.
Leviticus 10:1–4 ESV
Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it and laid incense on it and offered unauthorized fire before the Lord, which he had not commanded them. And fire came out from before the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord. Then Moses said to Aaron, “This is what the Lord has said: ‘Among those who are near me I will be sanctified, and before all the people I will be glorified.’ ” And Aaron held his peace. And Moses called Mishael and Elzaphan, the sons of Uzziel the uncle of Aaron, and said to them, “Come near; carry your brothers away from the front of the sanctuary and out of the camp.”
King Uzziah was struck with leprosy because he offered unauthorized incense in the Temple when only priests were to fulfill that duty:
Leviticus
2 Chronicles 26:16 ESV
But when he was strong, he grew proud, to his destruction. For he was unfaithful to the Lord his God and entered the temple of the Lord to burn incense on the altar of incense.
2 Chronicles 26:19 ESV
Then Uzziah was angry. Now he had a censer in his hand to burn incense, and when he became angry with the priests, leprosy broke out on his forehead in the presence of the priests in the house of the Lord, by the altar of incense.
2 Chronicles 26:16–19 ESV
But when he was strong, he grew proud, to his destruction. For he was unfaithful to the Lord his God and entered the temple of the Lord to burn incense on the altar of incense. But Azariah the priest went in after him, with eighty priests of the Lord who were men of valor, and they withstood King Uzziah and said to him, “It is not for you, Uzziah, to burn incense to the Lord, but for the priests, the sons of Aaron, who are consecrated to burn incense. Go out of the sanctuary, for you have done wrong, and it will bring you no honor from the Lord God.” Then Uzziah was angry. Now he had a censer in his hand to burn incense, and when he became angry with the priests, leprosy broke out on his forehead in the presence of the priests in the house of the Lord, by the altar of incense.
2 Chronicles
Graven images limits God and misrepresents God, therefore God says He is a jealous God.
2 Chronicles
Exodus 20:4–5 ESV
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or 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 or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me,
I Am a Jealous God
There is a negative view of jealousy. And there is also a positive jealousy. The Hebrew word here describes an intense emotion. When it says that God is jealous, it means that God is exclusively and passionate about His people. There is a good kind of jealousy.
It is not wrong for a husband to want his wife exclusively to Himself. If a man were not jealous for his wife and shared his wife, we would say that man does not truly love her.
The reason why God is jealous is because he is passionately in love with those whom He has chosen.
Jealous occurs in context of covenant just as like a marriage relationship. One writer the jealousy of God as:
“We may understand the jealousy of God as his fervent and passionate protection of what is rightfully His.” or “Jealousy could be defined as passionate zeal to protect a relationship”
It is good that God is jealous for us because He is in relationship with us and passionately loves us. So he will do whatever it takes to guard our devotion to Him alone.
and “Jealousy could be defined as passionate zeal to protect a relationship”
That is why God acts in judgment whenever this exclusive devotion is threatened.
“Jealousy could be defined as passionate zeal to protect a relationship”
“Jealousy could be defined as passionate zeal to protect a relationship”
Does God punish children for their father’s sins?
Visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me...
Well, we have to look to other Scriptures like .
Ezekiel 18:20 ESV
The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not suffer for the iniquity of the father, nor the father suffer for the iniquity of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.
A child is not responsible for his father’s sins. However, a child may be influenced and affected by his father’s sin.
If you grew up in a household where your father was an alcoholic, some children may be influenced to drink alcohol.
If you grew up in a household where your father did drugs, you may be affected and influenced by the drugs.
And in that time period, people lived in close proximity to one another and grandparents and parents and children and even grandchildren could live in the same home or within close proximity.
So if your father is an idolater and is worshipping idols, and his children don’t know any better and follows his father’s worship, he also becomes an idolater.
So Solomon, when he gave into idolatry, also influenced his own sons to give into idolatry.
That is not to say you can’t be redeemed or rescued from idolatry. God raised up many godly people raised in wicked households.
However, the generally speaking, your parent’s sin will affect and influence your behavior.
Fathers—You are either influencing your children to either love God or turn away from God. And your worship or lack of worship of God will affect your children. Your teaching or lack of teaching will affect your children.
If you don’t prioritize the Bible, your children will most likely not prioritize the Bible.
If you don’t prioritize the church, you children will most likely not prioritize the church.
Don’t tell your children they should love and serve God when your life testifies to the opposite.
We have a great and weight responsibility. Because what we do now could potentially affect not only our children, but our children’s children.
Ephesians 6:4 ESV
Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
That is not to say that if we love God, it will guarantee our children’s salvation. However, if we love God, it will also influence them and make it either easier or harder to love God.
Be an example. Read Scripture. Pray with them. Be Present with them.
God judges those who hate him.
The judgment falls on those who continue to hate God, including not only the fathers, but the children who hate him and reject Him.
Non-Christian—The judgment of God is real. If you think will not judge, you are misrepresenting God. God has already shown his judgment. We experience death as a result of our sin. And we will experience eternal death if we do not obey Him.
God is a holy and punishing God because He is jealous for His name and His people. We all have had wrong views of God. Eve had a wrong view of God when she thought that God was withholding something from her in the Garden. She was doubting his goodness.
The problem for you and I is that we too have wrong views of God. God is too gracious to care about my sin. God is unkind to forgive my sin. We pain a picture of God that is false.
But God’s grace is greater than his judgment because His his grace He Sent His own Son to be the sacrifice for our sins. And he rose again three days later.
A person who turns from their wicked ways, and trusts in Christ alone, will be forgiven and made new because Christ shed his own blood for those who would trust in Him.
But notice God’s grace is greater than His judgment.
Exodus 20:6 ESV
but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
Steadfast love means covenantal love or loyal love to those He is isn relationship with.
But God’s grace is greater than his judgment because His his grace He Sent His own Son to be the sacrifice for our sins. And he rose again three days later.
A person who turns from their wicked ways, and trusts in Christ alone, will be forgiven and made new because Christ shed his own blood for those who would trust in Him.
In other words, God is more willing to be gracious than judging. And he want to bless generations and generations of people who fear Him.
Ezekiel 18:23 ESV
Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked, declares the Lord God, and not rather that he should turn from his way and live?
He is more merciful to thousands of generations to those who love me and keep my commandments.
Think about Abraham. Abraham was shown love not only his his generation, but also to the thousandth generation to those who were in covenant with God (which includes us). God shows abundant mercy and kindness to those who will love and serve Him.
Non—Christian—God is extending His grace to you in Jesus Christ today. Will you repent and turn from your sin and place your hope in him alone? Will you trust that He alone can save? Repentance and faith is just another way of saying will you love God and obey Him?
And love and obedience are synonomous just as two sisters walking hand in hand as the Puritan Thomas Watson said.
Why did God give us the second commandment?
It limits God.
It misrepresents God.
It offends God.
How do we keep and obey the Second Commandment?
John 4:23–24 ESV
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 4:24 ESV
God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
How
We must worship God in Spirit
Because God is invisible and is Spirit, we must therefore worship Him in Spirit. We must ask His Spirit to open the eyes of our heart to see the greatness and beauty of God.
Therefore, we are to to divinize or spiritualize objects if we are to obey this commandment.
We must also be careful of taking mental images of God to worship God.
“God cannot be represented by a picture or sculpture, since He has intended His likeness to appear in us.” Calvin
Why did RCC allow images? It is the laymen’s book. But the Reformers said that is why we need to teach the people to read and listen to the Word.
Deuteronomy 16:22 ESV
And you shall not set up a pillar, which the Lord your God hates.
“An idol is defined not only as a physical representation of God, but as anything that functions as a focus for our worship, even if it has no physical representation” ed clowney
“God cannot be represented by a picture or sculpture, since He has intended His likeness to appear in us.” Calvin
“God cannot be represented by a picture or sculpture, since He has intended His likeness to appear in us.” Calvin
“God cannot be represented by a picture or sculpture, since He has intended His likeness to appear in us.” Calvin
“God cannot be represented by a picture or sculpture, since He has intended His likeness to appear in us.” Calvin
“How can we worship God the right way? What can save us from our own private idolatries? The answer is very simple: Rather than remaking God into our image, we need to be remade into his image. God”
We must be made new by the Holy Spirit. We must be born again to worship God rightly. And when the Holy Spirit convicts the sinner, and the sinner turns to Christ, he worships Him in Spirit.
2. We must worship God in Truth
“God cannot be represented by a picture or sculpture, since He has intended His likeness to appear in us.” Calvin
John 4:23 ESV
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.

QUESTION 98. But may not pictures be tolerated in churches as books for the laity?

Laity: ignorant people.

No: for we should not be wiser than God, who will not have His people taught by dumb idols, but by the lively preaching of His Word.

Our worship is spiritual, not phsyical or external.
RC believes that this is part of the first commandment still, while reformed make this the
Carved image is material. Limited in space and time. Has no power or ability. It completely misrepresents god.
Idols can be destroyed.
Therefore, if are to worship God rightly, we must worship Him according to revealed Truth, the 66 book of the Bible.
Idols have need. They need gifts. They need food.
Deuteronomy 4:11–12 ESV
And you came near and stood at the foot of the mountain, while the mountain burned with fire to the heart of heaven, wrapped in darkness, cloud, and gloom. Then the Lord spoke to you out of the midst of the fire. You heard the sound of words, but saw no form; there was only a voice.
And we cannot pick and choose which parts of the Bible we like. We need the whole Bible, and the whole counsel of God.
Illustration: RC. Statues and saints and crucifixes. Protestant churches have just a pulipit and no pictures.
“An idol is defined not only as a physical representation of God, but as anything that functions as a focus for our worship, even if it has no physical representation” ed clowney
We need to hear preaching, and not just the parts we like. We preach sin and grace. We preach law and gospel. We preach on heaven and hell. We preach about God’s holiness and mercy. We must preach the whole counsel of God.

And how should we keep this one? By reining in our disordered imaginations and reverently accepting that God is as he says he is. How unready and slow we are to do that! Yet we must learn to do it; for it is only as rose-colored fantasy is abandoned and realism takes its place that true worship—worship, that is, in truth—can begin.

Christian—Listen to all the Bible, not just parts of it.
Church—Preach all the Bible, not just parts of it.
3. We worship God in Christ.
Application: How can we avoid imaginations about God? Don’t just read the Bible by picking and choosing which parts of the Bible you like.
Preaching—We preach all of Scripture. We preach judgment with salvation. We preach sin with grace. We preach the law and gospel. We preach the whole counsel of God. To only focus on one aspect on God while neglecting others is to violate this commandment.
There is one image however we are allowed to worship. I’m not saying a picture, but a person. It is the One image who shows us God.

QUESTION 96. What does God require in the second commandment?

That we in no wise make any image of God, nor worship Him in any other way than He has commanded in His word.

John 1:18 ESV
No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.

QUESTION 98. But may not pictures be tolerated in churches as books for the laity?

Laity: ignorant people.

No: for we should not be wiser than God, who will not have His people taught by dumb idols, but by the lively preaching of His Word.

Psalm 115:4–7 ESV
Their idols are silver and gold, the work of human hands. They have mouths, but do not speak; eyes, but do not see. They have ears, but do not hear; noses, but do not smell. They have hands, but do not feel; feet, but do not walk; and they do not make a sound in their throat.
Colossians 1:15 ESV
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.
We are not to also “serve them”.
“Worshipping an image of Yahweh would be blasphemous in the sense that one would confuse the Creator with part of His creation” Rooker
Golden calf was illustration of idolatry.
Jealous occurs in context of covenant just as like a marriage relationship.
Hebrews 1:3 ESV
He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,
Sin is bend, curve, turn aside, twisted.
Application:
John 14:6–7 ESV
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”
How do we worship God rightly and obey the Second Commandment?
John 14:9 ESV
Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?
We worship in Spirit
We worship in Truth
If you see Jesus, you see God. If you want an image/likeness to worship, worship Jesus. And in worshipping Jesus, you worship God. If you honor the Son, you honor the Father.
But the way we see the Son is through the Spirit inspired truth of the Bible being taught and being heard.
Romans 10:17 ESV
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
We Worship in Christ who gives us His Spirit to Testify to the Truth.
We see Him who paid our ransom. We see Him who displayed the love and justice of God at the cross. We see Him who left his glory to redeem sinners.
4. We worship God through our faith fueled obedience
John 14:15 ESV
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments.
Summary:

Christ fulfilled all the righteous demands of the law in His life so that His death would be a perfect atonement for our sins. Indeed, we are justified by works—His works, not ours. Christ perfectly kept His Father’s list of do’s and don’ts for us. And He did so not so that we might ignore God’s commands, but so that we might no longer be slaves of sin but slaves of righteousness. Christ frees us by faith that we might bear fruit.

God hates false worship because it limits God, misrepresents God, and offends God calling upon His judgment.
God is Spirit and He must be worshipped in Truth. Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and no one comes to the Father except through Him. We worship God when we follow Christ.

Nothing created can serve to represent him, not even in the whole range of the created order, from top to bottom, and even in the realms of the mythopoeic creatures, in the heavens above and in the waters below the earth, because Yahweh has made every thing and every being.

Conclusion:

20:5 jealous The Hebrew term used here, qanna, denotes intense emotion.

We see by hearing and believing. One day, our faith will be turned to sight. But now our faith is fed by the Word of God. We see Christ by hearing and believing Christ. We call upon Christ in spirit by revealed truth so that God would be honored through our grateful obedience.
If some other man approached my wife, it is not wrong for me to be jealous for her devotion.
Let us make sure we are worshipping God not according to our own definitions, but according to how God has revealed himself in Holy Scripture.
Is it wrong to have pictures of Christ? Is it wrong to wear cross necklaces? Is it wrong to have statues in your house?
“A holy jealousy is one that guards someone’s rightful possession. The most obvious example is the love between a husband and wife. No husband who truly loves his wife could possibly endure seeing her in the arms of another man. It would make him intensely jealous, and rightly so!” Ryken
“Jealousy could be defined as passionate zeal to protect a relationship” Vines
“A holy jealousy is one that guards someone’s rightful possession. The most obvious example is the love between a husband and wife. No husband who truly loves his wife could possibly endure seeing her in the arms of another man. It would make him intensely jealous, and rightly so!” Ryken
Steadfast love means covenantal love or loyal love to those He is isn relationship with.
Sin is iniquity, a perversion of worship and God.
A family is covenantal, so a bad example is not only passed on, but sin.
God will hold fathers responsible for their sins.
“God is to be adored in the heart, not painted to the eye.” Thomas Watson.
Worshipping an idol would just be as absured as loving my wedding ring more than I love my wife. A wedding ring is a symbol of the marriage. But the wedding ring is not my wife. To think that my wife is only the wedding ring would be to dishonor her.
Would it be absurd to bow down to a picture of the King when the King is present?
Would it be absurd to adore a house rather than the builder of the house?
Why did RCC allow images? It is the laymen’s book. But the Reformers said that is why we need to teach the people to read and listen to the Word.
Deuteronomy 16:22 ESV
And you shall not set up a pillar, which the Lord your God hates.
Pictures of Christ, Shrines, Crucifixes, Prayer Beads, Statues and Icons should be rejected.
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(2) Love to God must be with all the heart.
(3) Love to God mus be flaming.
How do you know you love God?
(1) He who loves God desires His presence.
(2) He who loves God does not love sin.
(3) He who loves God is not much in love with anything else.
(4) He who loves God cannot live without Him.
(5) He who loves God will be at any pains to get Him.
(6) He who loves God prefers Him before estate or life.
(7) He who loves God loves his saints.
(8) He who loves God fears dishonoring Him.
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