Archive for idolatry

Predestined With Free Will: Egyptian Idolatry

Posted in Egypt/Nile River, Isaiah, Prophecy with tags , , , , , on March 3, 2019 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 19:3 and the spirit of the Egyptians within them will be emptied out, and I will confound their counsel; and they will inquire of the idols and the sorcerers, and the mediums and the necromancers…

Demoralized, their chosen attitude, the Egyptians will turn to idols, talking to the dead, and the occult in Isaiah 19:3. That is the Egyptian response and plan. God allows the Egyptians the free will to make their own way.

God in turn responds to the Egyptians and their plans. The translation of “confound” does not tell the whole story. He will “confound” or bala in the Hebrew. The idea communicated is intentional, intensive, and repeated action of swallowing their strategy. One could get the idea that the Egyptians will have many ideas and solutions to try to stop the civil war. These ideas (political, economic, religious, etc.) will be repeatedly shot down by God. The Egyptian solutions to the civil war will not succeed because God directly acts. Translated another way, the LORD will swallow or engulf their plans. Again, God allows the people to have their own ideas. Humanity’s ideas are no match for the LORD.

Photo: Ancient Symbols

Isaiah 19:4 Moreover, I will deliver the Egyptians into the hand of a cruel master, and a mighty king will rule over them,” declares the Lord GOD of hosts.

God will intentionally give (piel stem verb form in Hebrew) the Egyptian people this leader. There are two adjectives that describe this leader in the verse. You can bet this leader will likely use force on the population.

Qasheh or “cruel”: This word can be defined as hard, cruel, severe, obstinate, difficult, fierce, intense, vehement, stubborn, stiff-necked, rigorous (of battle).

`Az or translated “mighty”: This word can be defined as strong, mighty, fierce. (Strong’s Concordance)

Will a God-given overbearing dictator likely act cruelly toward his populous? Yes. Are the people responsible for how they respond to this tyrant? Yes.

These first four verses of Isaiah 19 make one point over and over and over. God is managing the action. Yet, people have choices and actions. God does not make Egypt or us do anything. We don’t always get our way.

This is a direct quote from God Himself. God states in the language and grammar, He is in charge.

Trend Update: Palmyra Arch, London, Trafalgar Square, April 2016

Posted in Gospel, Trend Update, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 27, 2016 by paulthepoke

Exodus 20:3 You shall have no other gods before Me.

Exodus 20:4 You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth.

Exodus 20:5-6 You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

These are the first three commandments. They are relational to God. Notice, how one relates to God comes before how people relate to each other. God is the priority. Then, He defines how we are to relate to each other.

God states the consequence of the “iniquity”. The Hebrew word is `avon. The word can also be translated as perversity, depravity, iniquity, guilt, or punishment (Strong’s Concordance). Idol worship and/or worship of other gods will impact your family tree to your grandchildren and great grandchildren. God takes this quite seriously.

Worshiping or bowing down to idols and/or false gods is equated with hating God.

The critic often says, “Well, the 10 Commandments are in the Old Testament and we live during the Church age in the New Testament. Jesus took care of the Law.”

The Law (10 Commandments) has not gone away. Jesus Himself made this very clear. Matthew 5:17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.”

Granted if one is a believer in Christ, He has you covered literally and figuratively. To the unbeliever, the Law is in full effect whether they believe it or not with consequences defined by God.

Following and obeying the commandments are equated with loving God. This is the case in both the Old and New Testaments. The message is consistent throughout the course of the Bible.

John 14:23 Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.

See also John 14, 1 John 2, 1 John 5, and 2 John 1.

The reconstruction of the arch of Palmyra is a direct violation. The arch is a gateway to the temple of Bel. There are idols of Bel. People worship Bel and the arch. Granted, this is not Bel specific. It is any other god(s) other than the Creator God of the Bible.

The Palmyra Arch was redesigned on a smaller scale and placed in Trafalgar Square, London on April 19, 2016. The rebuilding of the arch was done in defiance of ISIS. The arts and antiquities crowd is upset with the terrorists for destroying the original in Palmyra, Syria.

A replica was also to be erected in Times Square of New York City. Due to backlash from the Christian community, the arch was not unveiled in Times Square in April 2016. Segments of Christian society are running around with a hollow victory. The arch is still planned to make its way to New York City in September of 2016.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/20/arts/international/replica-of-palmyra-arch-is-unveiled-in-trafalgar-square.html?_r=0

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/palmyra-arch-destroyed-isis-rises-again-central-london-180958848/?no-ist

If someone sacrificed themselves to keep you out of Hell…what is your response?

Isaiah 17:9-11 Burden of Damascus: Abandoned and Forsaken

Posted in Burden of Damascus, Isaiah, Prophecy with tags , , , , , on January 20, 2013 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 17:9 In that day their strong cities will be like forsaken places in the forest, or like branches which they abandoned before the sons of Israel; and the land will be a desolation. 

Two examples are used by Isaiah to prove the point; the land will be desolated. Contained in this verse is a reminder that Israel had cleaned Syria’s clock in the past. So much so, the Syrian’s left their lookout and defense posts. 

Isaiah 17:10 For you have forgotten the God of your salvation and have not remembered the rock of your refuge. Therefore you plant delightful plants and set them with vine slips of a strange god. 

People had turned to idolatry and abandoned the true God. God reminds them He is their source of strength, safety, and welfare. God is their stronghold and protector. The people had forgotten.

There is a discussion in regards to the vine mentioned in this verse. A couple of thoughts and possibilities exist. Scholars state the vine may have cult like significance. The idea is the vine was grown for the purpose of a pagan ritual. Others have suggested the vine is a foreign import to Israel and not a native plant. Perhaps both could be the case. Research provided by NET Bible. 

Isaiah 17:11 In the day that you plant it you carefully fence it in, and in the morning you bring your seed to blossom; but the harvest will be a heap in a day of sickliness and incurable pain. 

This is a garden that is well taken care of. A fence has been put up to keep out the animals. The plants have been watered. The plants are blossoming. The final result is no fruit. The crops will disappear and there will be a pile of nothing. Others have translated the crops fly away.

There will be an incurable sickness. It is terminal. The word used for pain in the Hebrew is a term for both physical and mental pain.

Isaiah 17:7-8 Would the Real Holy One Stand Up!

Posted in Isaiah with tags , , , , , , on January 13, 2013 by paulthepoke

Isaiah 17:7 In that day man will have regard for his Maker and his eyes will look to the Holy One of Israel. 

Things get so bad, the only solution is to turn to God. Have we personally been in this place before? Circumstances are closing in and the only place you have to turn is to God. It is our nature to avoid God unless we are in deep trouble. We know the plea bargaining with God. Dear God if You will get me out of this one, I promise I will…

There are two references to vision or eye gaze in this verse. The language is specific, humanity will physically look with his eyes. The Holy One of Israel is God the Man. Is this a time marker regarding the return of Christ?

Isaiah 17:8 He will not have regard for the altars, the work of his hands, nor will he look to that which his fingers have made, even the Asherim and incense stands. 

Asherim is the plural form of Asherah. Like the Hebrew, the pagans used the plural form to express the greatness and magnitude of their goddess. Asherim is the primary goddess of the area of Tyre and Sidon (modern day Lebanon, north of Israel). Asherah appears by the side of the masculine Baal. She is seen as a nude woman with a lily in one hand and a serpent in the other hand. She symbolizes grace, sex appeal and fertility. Worship often resulted in ridiculous sexual perversion. Another name for her is Qudshu, which means “the holy one”. —New Unger’s Bible Dictionary

These verses are a head on address to the false “holy one” that is Asherah. Man will turn from their created god to the creator God. What is left will no longer worship a tree or a pole but worship the God who created the tree. There is a change from the “holy one” of pagans to the “Holy One” of Israel who is the Creator. The wooden idols and incense are out. They are of no use and not helping in their current calamity. Things decline to the degree, man will ditch his idols and turn to the true Holy One.

The reality of the comparison is this. Do you trust a goddess who is worshiped with sexual perversion and prostitution? Or do you believe in a man who died on a cross for you?

PaulthePoke

Prophecy Watch & Bible Study

%d bloggers like this: