Showing Mercy to Thousands

You shall not make a carved image… you shall not bow down to them nor serve them.

Deuteronomy 5:8-10

‘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, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments

Deuteronomy 5:8-10 (NKJV)

The paragraph above is one of the most misread and misunderstood passages in the bible. Some people use this to say it is a sin to take a photograph or watch a movie. However, they don’t say anything about making statues as monuments to fallen heroes and they visit those statues and remember the fallen.

Let us take another look. What is the first verse? “’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.”

Look at what I have underlined. What is a “carved image?” The dolls made in molds, not the ones that are sewn. A carved or poured plaque, especially if it is dedicated to someone. A carved “bust,” a carved or poured animal or mythical creature/person. These are the things Moses was talking about. These are the things God described to Moses when he gave him the Ten Commandments.

What about photographs? Do you worship Photographs? Let me tell you about a couple I once knew.

They were the Wilsons, Joe, and Margie. They had a son named Adam who was killed in Vietnam. When Adam was buried. Joe built a platform in the living room of their house. Joe hung an 18”X20” picture of Adam with candle sconces on each side. He also built a podium on the stage. Around the stage he built a kneeling bench on each side. Every night they would kneel and pray.

The reverence this couple were showing was not to God, it was to their son. I have been to their house many times and what we talked about most was their son. Even when we were supposed to be talking about the bible, they always found a way to make their son part of the conversation.

My dad had a second-grade education. But the book he practiced his reading in was the King James bible. I have known a lot of people with college educations that listened to my dad when it came to knowledge about life. I didn’t appreciate his knowledge until I was grown and on my own. He was probably one of the most knowledgeable people I have ever met, and he knew his bible.

I talk about my dad at times to my visitors, but he is not the only subject and I am not constantly grieving about his death.

I have many pictures of my grandchildren and I love to show them to people to let them know about my family. I like looking through scrapbooks to see the different people and what they like. There is no harm there, I do not bow down to them nor do I serve them.

Look at the second part of that sentence. If we bow before a picture to pray, even if we are praying to God it is wrong and our prayers are wasted.

Now look at the last statement God made in that paragraph. God promised His love to those who keep His commandments. If I live the bible every day, I will without trying keep God’s Commandments.

What most people don’t understand is that for them to keep the commandments, they first have to know what those commandments are. To know what they are, you must read and study the bible.

God’s love is everything. If you read and study God’s word, you won’t be able to do without it. If you live a sinful life you will one day with you had it.

My family and I have never worshipped each other, nor have we ever desired to be rich in money or in glory. What we have wanted is a good paycheck and we will give our tithe of one tenth of the money and all the glory to God and his love. AMEN!!

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