On this week's episode of Theology Gals, Coleen and Ashley discuss the second commandment and images of Jesus.
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. 5 You shall not worship them or serve them; for, 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, 6 but showing lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
Catechism & Confession
What does God require
in the second commandment?
We are not to make an image of God in any way, 1
nor to worship him in any other manner
than he has commanded in his Word. 2
1.Deut 4:15-19; Is 40:18-25; Acts 17:29; Rom 1:23.
2.Lev 10:1-7; Deut 12:30; 1 Sam 15:22, 23; Mt 15:9; Jn 4:23, 24.
May we then not make
any image at all?
God cannot and may not
be visibly portrayed in any way.
Creatures may be portrayed,
but God forbids us
to make or have any images of them
in order to worship them
or to serve God through them. 1
1.Ex 34:13, 14, 17; Num 33:52; 2 Kings 18:4, 5; Is 40:25.
But may images not be tolerated
in the churches
as “books for the laity”?
No, for we should not be wiser than God.
He wants his people to be taught
not by means of dumb images 1
but by the living preaching of his Word. 2
1.Jer 10:8; Hab 2:18-20.
2.Rom 10:14, 15, 17; 2 Tim 3:16, 17; 2 Pet 1:19.
Westminster Confession of Faith
Chapter 21: Of Religious Worship, and the Sabbath Day
1. The light of nature showeth that there is a God, who hath lordship and sovereignty over all, is good, and doth good unto all, and is therefore to be feared, loved, praised, called upon, trusted in, and served, with all the heart, and with all the soul, and with all the might. But the acceptable way of worshiping the true God is instituted by himself, and so limited by his own revealed will, that he may not be worshiped according to the imaginations and devices of men, or the suggestions of Satan, under any visible representation, or any other way not prescribed in the Holy Scripture.
Westminster Larger Catechism
Q. 107. Which is the second commandment?
A. The second commandment is, Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven 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. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
Q. 108. What are the duties required in the second commandment?
A. The duties required in the second commandment are, the receiving, observing, and keeping pure and entire, all such religious worship and ordinances as God hath instituted in his word; particularly prayer and thanksgiving in the name of Christ; the reading, preaching, and hearing of the word; the administration and receiving of the sacraments; church government and discipline; the ministry and maintenance thereof; religious fasting; swearing by the name of God, and vowing unto him: as also the disapproving, detesting, opposing, all false worship; and, according to each one’s place and calling, removing it, and all monuments of idolatry.
Q. 109. What sins are forbidden in the second commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the second commandment are, all devising, counseling, commanding, using, and any wise approving, any religious worship not instituted by God himself; the making any representation of God, of all or of any of the three persons, either inwardly in our mind, or outwardly in any kind of image or likeness of any creature whatsoever; all worshiping of it,