Jeremiah 10:1 through 16 have to do with subject of idolatry, graven images, molten images, false gods. Then verses 17 through the end of the chapter, we deal with some of the familiar themes of the book of Jeremiah, just about the fact that Jerusalem is going to be destroyed, the children of Judah are going to be led away captive, the Babylonians are coming, and Jeremiah expresses some of his own thoughts out of his heart.
In Jeremiah 10, look at verse 1. The Bible reads: "Hear ye the word which the Lord speaketh unto you, O house of Israel. Thus saith the Lord, learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them."
Now, when the Bible says you're not to be dismayed at the signs of heaven, this has to do with what we would know today as astrology, where different zodiacs and different signs in the heavens where this particular sign is rising and this one's descending and this one's passing through this. People will actually try to determine the events of their lives based upon these things. They look into the horoscope and it'll tell them, "Well, because the heavenly bodies are doing X, Y, and Z, this and that is going to happen in your life."
The Bible condemns that repeatedly. This is one of the places where it condemns that, that we should not be dismayed by the signs of heaven like: "Oh, no. Bad things are gonna happen because this particular zodiac told me that." We need to stay away from horoscopes and astrology and all of that stuff. That's just a gateway into the occult.
Today, there are a lot of things that have made their way into our American culture that are gateways to that which is satanic, that which is demonic, or occultic in nature. One of those things is yoga, where people need to beware. A lot of people today are just being told: "This is just an exercise program." That's what I used to think because I didn't know anything about it. It's just stretching, it's exercise, it's good for you, but this "exercise" of yoga, it's not just that it has a bad origin or something. Who knows where certain things came from? It's just that the practice of yoga itself is a part of the false religion of Hinduism. It's part and parcel of that religion.
When you take a yoga class and you do these different poses, one the first poses that you learn has to do with saluting the sun. It's basically the sun salutation and it has to do with actually worshiping the heavenly bodies. It also has to do with emptying yourself and they go through these processes and transcendental meditation or in yoga meditation or Hinduism where they're basically trying to reach higher levels of consciousness.
I believe all they're doing is inviting demons in. If you read up on Hindu meditation, you'll realize they are practicing with familiar spirits and they'll get in these meditative states. They get into these yoga poses and they focus on their breathing and they clear their mind of anything else and just focus on their breathing and breathing in, breathing. Then voices will come talk to them and other spirits will come and communicate with them. That's what's going on with it.
Don't get caught up in this. Stay away from the ouija board. Stay away from the astrology section, the horoscope. Stay away from the psychic palm reader. Stay away from yoga. These things, even though they might seem like they're just fun and innocent, they are demonic. We don't want to open ourselves up to these type of evil spirits and things.
I find it bizarre that they sell ouija boards in the section with the board games. It's made by Milton Bradley, next to Monopoly. What does it say? 12 and up. You can start. Don't smoke until you're 18, don't drink until you're 21, but you can start communicating with demons at age 12. We need to be wary of these things and especially of astrology and things of that nature, things that have to do with the occult
It says in verse number 3: "For the customs of the people are vain," because it says in verse 2, "Learn not the way of the heathen," because he's saying the heathen are into astrology, they're into these things. Now it begins to talk about another heathen practice which is the practice of idolatry, graven or molten images.
This is a subject that I've actually been wanting to preach a sermon about and it just worked out great that Jeremiah 10 came up because I was thinking on a Sunday I wanted to do a sermon about this because this is a subject that is so misunderstood by so many people. A lot of people, they get confused between literal idolatry and figurative idolatry or metaphorical idolatry. The Bible talks about both.
I really want you to listen up tonight because I want you to comprehend this truth. It's so important that you get this. There are two types of idolatry. There is a literal, physical idolatry and then there is a metaphorical idolatry or figurative, symbolic idolatry. The reason I want to make this point is because people get so caught up in the figurative definition that they forget the literal definition.
Today, when we talk about idolatry, people have zero concept of the literal definition because they're so focused on the secondary definition. I'm not saying that the secondary definition doesn't matter but I'm saying we need to keep both in mind. There are two kinds of idolatry tonight.
Idolatry number one is when we have a literal physical graven or molten image. I'm going to explain to you exactly what that entails and I'm going to show you from the Bible what that entails. We're talking about the Buddha statue or the Hindu god statue. It would include also graven images of Mary and the saints and Jesus. I'm going to go into all that. It would include Mount Rushmore and the Jefferson Memorial. We'll get into that moment. That's a literal carved image.
Then over here, we have a secondary definition, a metaphorical, figurative definition that has to do with worshiping something other than God. If we worship anything other than God, that is idolatry in a figurative sense. Even though we don't have the literal graven image or literal molten image, we're still worshiping something other than God.
That's why the Bible says, "Covetousness is idolatry," because God talks about the people who worship money. He calls that worshiping mammon, the god of money. There are people who live their lives only to make money. In a sense, even though they're not committing a literal physical idolatry, they're practicing idolatry in a figurative sense. That's where we get this looser definition of idolatry like, "Covetousness is idolatry."
Now, worshiping the sun, worshiping the moon, or worshiping the stars would also be idolatry under that definition. Figurative idolatry, bowing down worshiping anything other than the Lord is idolatry but that doesn't make it a literal graven image. Two different things. See because people are so caught up in the metaphorical definition, they think graven images are fine just as long as you're not saying that they're God or worshiping them as God. They'll try to justify graven images. Actually, just making a graven image is a sin in and of itself: making one, owning one, having one, whether you worship it or not.
Let's look at this chapter a little bit and then we'll go to some of the supporting passages in Exodus, Deuteronomy, and elsewhere. Let's keep reading here. It says in verse 3: "For the customs of the people are vain. For one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not." See these graven images [inaudible 00:08:34] they don't talk.
"They must needs be borne," borne means carried, "Because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good. Forasmuch as there is none like unto thee, O Lord; thou art great, and thy name is great in might. Who would not fear thee, O King of nations? For to thee doth it appertain: for as among all the wise men of the nations, and in their kingdoms, there is none like unto thee. But they are altogether brutish," brutish means stupid, "They are altogether brutish and foolish. The stock is a doctrine of vanities."
What is the stock? The stock is used elsewhere in the Bible where he talks about bowing down to the stock of a tree. Now, what I want you to understand that a lot of people get confused here. No one was actually bowing down to the stock of the tree in its unfinished format. They didn't just take a tree stump and just started bowing down to a tree stump.
What they did was they took a tree from the forest, they cut it down, they bring it in. The Bible says, "They work on it. They fasten it with nails. And they plate it with gold, plate it with silver. They form it into an image like unto man or like unto beasts or creeping things. They have mouths but they speak not. They have ears but they hear not. They have feet but they cannot go. And they that worship them are like unto them."
In what way? He says that this idol is a dumb idol. He says, "It is brutish and foolish," and he says, "If you worship it, you're foolish, you're brutish." Thank you, "They that worship them are like unto them." People have become confused by this passage to the point where they literally said, "A tree is a graven image." Literal, just a tree, like a literal tree that grows, that's a graven image.
Here's the thing. Do you not know what the word graven means? I'm just wondering maybe people don't know because it's [not 00:10:48]. I mean, I'm not mad at you if you don't know because it's not a word that we use in our modern vernacular. Most people know what engraving is. When we put that en at the beginning of grave, it has to do with carving, lettering, or carving some kind of a picture into something. That's called an engraving.
For example, if I had some wooden object and my name were carved into it, then I would say it was engraved with my name, carved in. If we get rid of engrave and we just say grave, it just means carve. Grave means carve. Everybody understand? A graven image is a carved image. What we're doing is we're taking wood and carving it into the shape of either man or beast or creeping thing.
Remember Romans 1? It talks about they took the image of the uncorruptible God and they made it into an image like unto corruptible man or an image like unto a beast or an image like the creeping things. These are the things that people make graven images of: human beings or beasts or animals. Does everybody follow so far?
Then there's the counterpart of the graven image which [just knows 00:12:06] the molten image, which molten comes from the word melt. It means melted image. What that is referring to is something that's made of metal that's not carved, but rather it's melted down and poured into a mold. This is how they make the idols over in India and over in Asia where they create these molds and then they pour hot metal into them. Then they basically will beat it with a hammer and so forth.
What the Bible is talking about here is a wooden carved image, a graven image and then they basically plate it in silver or gold. That way, they don't have to spend all the money to have a solid gold idol or a solid silver idol. It's gold plated, it's silver plated. Look at the verse there in verse number 9. Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish.
Notice that we're in one continuous flow here because in verse 3 it said, "For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest." Notice the present tense because he's taking about a process that goes on continually. Somebody cuts a tree out of the forest. Then silver plates are brought from Tarshish, gold from Uphaz.
He's explaining the process of how these idols are made. They cut down a tree, they fasten it. They get these silver plates, they get the gold plates, brought from tarshish, gold from Uphaz. The work of the workmen and of the hands of the founder. There are people involved that are skilled laborers making these idols. There's a workman that does the carving. There's a founder who does the metal work. That person is called a founder. They work in a foundry. You've heard that term?
It says blue and purple is their clothing. They're all the work of cunning men. The word cunning there means skillful in working with their hands. The Bible uses this word elsewhere to talk about the people who built the Tabernacle, people that worked on the temple, that they were cunning workmen. They were skilled at what they did.
Again, this is not talking about worshiping a tree because a lot of people will say, "Hey, you know, if you bring a Christmas tree into your house or any houseplant, you're in violation of Jeremiah 10." Who's ever heard that before? Where people pull out Jeremiah 10 and say, "Hey, it's a Christmas tree. The Bible says not to bring a tree into your house." False.
The Bible is saying, "Don't take a tree and get a cunning workman to carve that thing into an idol." If you actually get the context, this whole thing is about that type of idolatry from verses 1 through 16. He goes on and on about they can't talk, they can't hear. I mean, who in the world ever expected their Christmas tree to talk to them or to go anywhere or to be in a living being? They didn't. Again, this is taking scripture out of context.
Look. If people don't want to have a Christmas tree, no problem. Here's the problem though. It shows a total lack of understanding of what a graven image is. I mean these flat-earthers, they came at me with this, that the globe is a graven image. Here's the thing. If a circle, I mean, to this, I guess like a square is a graven image, a circle is a graven image. Another thing that people brought out is ...
I was preaching the other day about Babylon and I was pointing out the fact that neither the Jews nor the Muslims worship before graven images. They do not have carved images. They do not have molten images. People just freak out and think that I am defending these wicked [religion 00:15:54].
Listen. Both Judaism and Islam are wicked religions and the people who follow them are going to split hell wide open. I'm not defending these religion. I'm just pointing out the fact that these two religions do not partake in the worship of graven images or molten images. I specifically said, "They don't have idolatry in the literal sense."
I just get all these emails: "You're so wrong because they bow down to a giant cube." If a cube is a graven image, then every building is a graven image, every pulpit, every [room 00:16:32]. No. Is it wrong for them to bow down and worship at a giant game cube? Yes, it's wrong because it's wrong to worship anything except the Lord. Somebody said, "Oh, the Wailing Wall is a graven image." Then every wall is a graven image. That doesn't even make sense.
Listen. You can worship the sun, moon, and stars. It's a sin but that doesn't make the sun a graven image, people. You can worship money. That doesn't make money a graven image. Now, the coins with the faces carved on them, okay, I can see that being a graven image but don't tell me that a giant cube is a graven image.
Am I defending Islam? Of course not. Islam is a wicked [religion 00:17:16]. I got plenty of sermons where I chewed that religion up and spit out and preached super hard against both Judaism and Islam. It's significant the fact that they don't have graven images because we're talking about Babylon which is known as, in the Bible, the land of graven images. The Bible goes on and on about the literal ideology of Babylon in the sense of molten and carved images.
I was pointing out that these half-baked theories about Jerusalem or Mecca or these other places being Babylon, they don't hold water. One of the thousand reasons is that they don't partake a literal idolatry. You will not find Jewish people bowing down to statues. You will not find Muslims bowing down to statues. It's that simple. Do they bow down and rock in front of a wall or in front of a game cube or face toward Mecca?
Somebody said Mecca is a graven image. It's like, "Look. Get a dictionary, people, and look up the word graven and figure out what you're talking about." I'm all for being corrected when I'm wrong but don't come at me and tell me that a cube is a graven image because a graven image is of man or beast, man or beast.
See this right here? This is a graven tree. This is not man. This is not beast. The building that we're in the door, the door, the door is not an idol. This pulpit is not an idol. Why? This guitar is not an idol. Why? Because they're not in the shape of man or beast. They're not male or female.
Look, if you would, on Exodus 20. Let's look up some scriptures on the graven image to understand this doctrine. One of the Ten Commandments is: "Though shalt not make unto thee any graven image." Now, let me just point out first of all that we don't just call it the Ten Commandments as some sort of a matter of tradition but rather the Bible actually uses the term Ten Commandments.
I'm going to read that for you. It's in Deuteronomy 10:4. I always remember this because it's like when you're on the radio and you understood something, you say 10-4. That's how I remember that. "And he wrote on the tables, according to the first writing, the ten commandments," everybody got that? "The ten commandments which the Lord spake unto you in the mount out of the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly: and the Lord gave them unto me."
In the Bible, the Ten Commandments are laid out in Exodus 20 and there are ten of them. The second commandment is: "Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image." Verse number 3 has the first commandment: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." Commandment number one. Commandment number two: "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."
Here we see that we are not to make them, we're not to bow down to them, nor are we to serve them. It's a neither-nor. It's not, "Don't do all three of these at once." It's, "Don't make it, don't bow down to it, and don't serve it." Those are the three things, if you're doing any one of those things to a graven image you're in sin. Any of those three things. Those are the three things that are prohibited in the second commandment.
Now, the Roman Catholic Church is the most guilty party when it comes to graven images. I mean you want to talk about idolatry and molten images. They are the kings of idolatry. This is an inconvenient commandment for them because they make them and they bow down to them. "Well, we're not worshiping it." You're bowing down to it and then they also serve it. How did they serve it? They'll put incense in front of it. They'll light a candle to it and serve it in that way. They do all three of these things.
They had to get rid of this out of the Ten Commandments. Therefore, if you read the Catholic catechism, their version of the Ten Commandments, this commandment is removed. Here's the problem when you remove the second commandment about: Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image," now you only have nine Commandments and that's a problem. Here's how they fix that problem.
Jump down, if you would, to verse number 17. This is the Tenth Commandment. It says, "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's." Just like the graven image Commandment has three subpoints: don't have it, don't bow down to it, don't serve it. This Commandment some subpoints too: don't covet. What should you not covet? Your neighbor's house, your neighbor's wife, anything that belongs to your neighbor. It goes through a list of there.
What the Catholics have done is divided the Tenth Commandment in half because they have to get back up to the number 10 somehow. "What do we do about that Second Commandment that we deleted?" They cut this one in a half. You say, "Well, is there a separate commandment about not coveting your neighbor's house?" No. What they do is they take the one about the wife because they think, "You know, we could probably get away with making that its own commandment."
Don't let it bother you that it's a second thing on the list but they'll take it out and they'll basically say, "Okay. So verse 16 is Commandment number nine: Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor." No. That's Commandment eight for them because they don't have number two. They'll say, "Well, bearing false witness is Commandment eight," and then they'll say, "Well, thou shall not covet thy neighbor's house, that's number 10, so going from 8 to 10." Then, "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife," that's number nine again. Then, "Thou shalt not covet his manservant," now we're back on ten again.
Does that make any sense to you? Do you really think that that's what's God is trying to do here? God is not the author of confusion. They in their zeal for their lying, false, pagan, wicked church, making the word of God of [non-effect 00:24:12] through their tradition had just butchered the Tenth Commandment, "Thou shalt not covet," and pulled one thing out of the list and put it by itself and say, "Well this is its own commandment, 'Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife.'"
The problem with that is in the New Testament. These Commandments are simplified down to just: "Thou shalt not kill. Thou shalt not commit adultery. Thou shalt not steal. Thou shalt not bear false witness. And thou shalt not covet." Just, "Thou shalt not covet," in Romans 13 is how it's listed.
God didn't say, "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife or anything else," when he was doing the short version. Everybody understand what I'm saying? Again, this is the total fraud of the Catholic Church trying to hide their blatant, pagan idolatry. You know why? Because they don't teach their people to read the Bible. Most Catholics don't read the Bible. They don't know what the Bible says but they know their catechism.
If you read a Catholic Bible, the Second Commandment is still there but it's not in the catechism. It's been removed and the tenth commandment has been split in two because they know that that's all the Catholics are getting is that garbage catechism. They're not actually getting the Word of God. That's how they keep their people deceived.
Go over to Deuteronomy 4. This is a key scripture that goes into little more detail on the graven images and really explains what God is talking about here. He explains part of the reason why we should have no graven image because it's not just a sin to make a graven image of a false god. The Bible makes it clear that even if you make a graven image to the true God, you're committing sin.
There is a guy in the Book of Judges named Micah. He had a graven image of the Lord. Here's the thing: how can you have a graven image of the Lord when no one's ever seen the Lord? He's got a graven image unto Jehovah. He's never seen Jehovah.
That's what God spells out here in Deuteronomy 4:15. "Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves; for ye saw no manner of similitude on the day that the Lord spake unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire." Look. "When I spoke to you in the mount, when I gave you those Ten Commandments, you did not see any image. All you heard was a voice talking to you."
Take heed unto that. He's saying, "Remember that. Realize that. Pay attention to that." Then the sentence continues in verse 16, meaning if you don't remember that, this is what you might do: "Lest you corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image." Then he explains what a graven image is: "the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female, the likeness of any beast that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged fowl that flieth in the air, the likeness of any thing that creepeth on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the waters beneath the earth."
He gives them example saying, "Look. This is what I don't want you to make. I don't want you making any male or female images. I don't want you making beast. I don't want you making fish, birds, anything."
Then he has another thing that he says in verse 19: "And lest thou," so he's saying, "You didn't see any image in the mount," [so here's 00:27:40] two things to stay away from. Number one, graven images of animals. Number two, he says, the other way that they could corrupt themselves: "And lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the hosts of heaven, shouldest be driven to worship them, and serve them, which the Lord thy God hath divided unto all nations under the whole heaven."
God is saying here, "Don't look up at the sun, moon, and stars and worship them." It's not that their graven images. it's just that you're not supposed to worship anything except God. "Worship the Lord thy God and him only, shalt thou serve no other gods before Him."
The Bible is real clear here that we should not have any graven or molten images. It's amazing to me, that in this passage, he specifically brings up a bird and a fish. We've been on the Catholics and we ought to be on them, but Evangelical Christians today have a molten image on the back of their car. It's always a bird or a fish. Right? I mean if they want to have a symbol of Christianity on the back of their car, they have a molten fish or a molten bird.
Those are the two symbols. It's either this so-called Jesus fish or it is the little dove. Calvary Chapel style dove and they'll have that metal dove emblem on the back of their car. I'm against both. It's a molten image of an animal. It's something that's prohibited in scripture. Now you say, "Well but the fish is the symbol of Christianity." No, it isn't. That's not biblical. The pope wears a hat that's shaped like a fish because he's the high priest of Dagon, the fish god, because he's practicing Roman paganism.
By the way, just to give you a clue, this Sunday morning, I've got a sermon coming up about the Roman Harlot Babylon Catholic Church. Let me tell you something. They are so wicked and they have murdered so many people. This Sunday morning I'm doing a sermon on the Catholic Inquisition, some of you never hear about.
I remember when I was in school. They'd always just gloss it over, skip that chapter. Nobody's allowed to talk about it. Even today, they justify it. Where the Catholic church for hundreds of years murdered people, burned them at the stake, and tortured people for their faith. They still justify it to this day. That's the Sunday morning sermon. I don't want to get off on that. That's just a little advertisement to be here on Sunday morning.
Anyway, the point is though, he's got all that weirdo stuff that's a remnant of Roman religion and one of them is a hat that's shaped like a fish. I don't need a fish symbol to represent the Lord Jesus Christ. I don't need a bird to represent the Holy Spirit.
When the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove, it's not saying that it looked like a dove. It's saying that it descended like a dove descends. It descended as a dove would descend, in the sense that a dove lands a certain way or flies a certain way. We should not have, and you say, "Well, I'm not worshiping it." Hold on. Don't make it. Don't install it. No fish, no bird, no statues.
Look. Since people struggle to understand the term graven image or molten image, let me just help you by giving you the modern-day synonym here would be statue. You say, "Well, how do I know what's a molten image and a graven image?" It's our modern word statue. Pretty much anything that we would call today a statue is a graven image or a molten image but then also certain things that we would not call a statue because things that are very small, we wouldn't really refer to it as a statue. Little, small molten images or a little Buddha around someone's neck. Obviously that's just a small version of a statue or a molten image or a graven image, but statues are included.
Again, a pulpit, a giant cube, these aren't statues. A wall, not a statue. Should you worship it? No. There are people going nature and worshiping all kinds of things and stuff, but that doesn't make them a graven image.
Let me tell you something. Mount Rushmore is idolatry. It is a gigantic graven image. It is the similitude of male or female. It is exalting man beyond what he ought to be exalted. Not only that, the Abraham Lincoln Memorial, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial. Here's the thing. We were just at the Abraham Lincoln Memorial and the Jefferson Memorial just weeks ago. It says right there engraved in stone at the Abraham Lincoln Memorial: "This Temple is dedicated yada, yada, yada." It's shaped like a Roman Temple and instead of a pagan god, they've got a giant statue of Abraham Lincoln. It's idolatry.
Also, the college that I went to Bible College too, Hyles-Anderson College, has a molten image outside of its front door of Jack Hyles. Here is the thing. I'm not blaming Jack Hyles on that because one of his friends told me, and I don't know if this is true, but they told me that he refused to have them put that image there. That's why they rolled it out after he died and they lied about it and said that they made it after he died but really all they did was just put some finishing touches on it after he died and then claimed that they had just made it.
The reality was that from what I was told by someone who is in that ministry, told me, they said, "I was there and they wanted to put that statue there and he refused because he felt that it was overboard." Whether that's true or not, that's what I was told. The bottom line is whether that's true or not, whether he would have approved of such a thing or not, isn't really the point.
You put a statue of a Baptist preacher at the front door, that's idolatry. That's a graven image. Sometimes pastors are lifted up and exalted more highly than they ought to be. Yes, we should be respectful to the pastor and give honor to whom honor is due but when you're making a graven image or molten image of that man, that's overboard. There are a lot of other things that could be overboard as well. That's another sermon.
The point is that we should stay away from idolatry. The little owl statue on the front porch, I believe is idolatry. It is a graven image because think about the fact that a lot of our politicians going worshiping giant owl statue in California at the Bohemian Grove: Moloch.
It's funny I used to go, [saw 00:34:57] your brother Garrett a lot and he had this thing where he told me. He said, "I've never gotten anybody say when they had owl statue." Did you ever get somebody say [that's the owl 00:35:05]? He did. He finally got one say that had the owl statue because he was trying to see. He's like, "Man," he's like, "Whenever there's an owl statue, they always say no." He finally got one person say that had. There's hope for those who have the owl statue. They might listen to the Gospel. It was just a funny coincidence. He was just like, "Yeah, you know, they got that idol out there."
I remember when I was growing up we had this little stone statue. What was it? Was it an owl? I can't believe I don't remember. It's funny, you start forgetting things but it was some kind of a bird. I think it was an owl but it was like this big. When I was growing up, we'd watch the Indiana Jones movie where he had the little idol, the pagan idol. We would always play with this little owl or whatever, and we would pretend it was that idol from Indiana Jones. We'd fill little bag of sand and [we're 00:36:01] swapping it out and everything like that.
Here's the thing though. Then I got older and I said to my mom, I was like like, "Mom, this is idolatry." She said, "Throw it away. Get rid of it." I said, "Okay", and I threw it away.
Sometimes things slip in and they might seem harmless, but we should beware of idolatry and understand that God doesn't want us having statues. You say, "Well, are you against decoration?" I'm all for decorations but decorations should not consist of carved or molten animals and human beings because of the fact that it reeks of idolatry.
There's too much of a temptation there or it's getting you used to idols to where then when you see idols, they don't take you aback [and where 00:36:53] you just so used to it [because 00:36:54], "Yeah, this is just, it's just a statue. I mean, what's the difference between the statues of the saints in the Catholic church and Mount Rushmore, the Jefferson Memorial, Hyles-Anderson College? They got the molten Jack Hyles there. What's the difference? That's why we just need to discard all of it and just stay away from that.
Because the problem is, even if you say, "Well, come on. That little owl [book in 00:37:20] that you have, that thing is harmless." Here's the thing though: what's next? You have to draw the line somewhere to stay far away from idols and that's where we draw the line, where God drew the line. Don't make any carved image or melted image of an animal or of human being because in Romans, it talks about [that too 00:37:43], Romans 1, the image of man or beast, both of them.
Let's go back to Jeremiah 10 with that in mind. Jeremiah 10, idolatry is what we're talking about, not figurative idolatry. That's a sin and of itself, putting anything before God, worshiping anything before God. That's the First Commandment, no other gods before him. Then, there's the literal graven, molten image that we need to beware of in our personal lives and especially when it's a religious object.
I mean, you're going to tell me that the Catholics don't worship graven images? They bow down to a carved image of Mary but then they say, "Well, we're not worshiping." Worship is defined as bowing down in the Bible. Bowing down is worshiping. Even if it's not, okay, you're not worshiping it, are you bowing down to it? That's what the Commandment actually said. It said, "Don't make them, bow down to them, or serve them." Fine. You want to play some semantic game? "Well, we're not really [worshiping 00:38:46]." Yeah, but you're serving it. You're bowing down to it. You're making it. You're in violation of that [Commandment 00:38:51]. I forgot. You guys deleted that from your doctrine.
It's wicked and the Catholic church is a [pay 00:39:00], I mean, [you walk in 00:39:00]. I don't understand how anybody into a Catholic church and thinks that's anything to do with the New Testament, all the riches. I mean, whatever happened to silver and gold have I none? That's what Peter said and they think he's the first pope. Peter said, "Silver and gold have I none but such as I have give I unto you, in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, arise and walk."
They have more riches and wealth than any other religion in this world. The pope and all of his cardinals and bishops and priests, they have all kinds of treasures and wealth. The churches are these big palaces and cathedrals and just unbelievable wealth but they claim to be following a man who didn't even have anywhere to put his head: Jesus Christ, the apostles. What about Paul when he's in hunger and thirst and fasting and nakedness? They're just living high on the hog, just total wealth, total luxury, total decadence.
Then the sad thing is that Evangelical Christians and Baptist feel like they have to keep up with the Joneses down at the Catholic church so then they build their own palaces and cathedrals and giant buildings to try to somehow match all that jewelry all over that filthy harlot, the Catholic church, trying to look like the strange and promiscuous filthy whore of Catholicism. They try to dress up Evangelical Christianity like that by giving it a real fancy, luxurious building. Never here.
If somebody gave me a fancy building, I'd be like, "Man, this is too fancy. Don't give me, don't come at me with some fancy pulpit." This is my pulpit. It's ugly. It's rough. It's made out of wood. It's not some golden ornate fancy schmancy. This building is [inaudible 00:41:02] "[Still meeting 00:41:02] on a strip mall." "Hey, we're gonna meet in a strip mall until Jesus comes. You know what? We're just gonna keep finding a bigger strip mall."
If you say, "Well, I'm gonna keep going Faithful Word and hopefully they'll get out of strip mall," you're going to be waiting a long time because we're just going to move in to some grocery store building. There are big buildings in strip malls, until Jesus comes. Amen, in a strip mall because I don't measure our churches success by what kind of a cathedral we can build. The sad thing is that's what the Baptist's are saying about us.
As we preach the word and as we win souls and turn this city upside down and everybody in this city knows who we are, but then, "They're still meeting in a strip mall?" So what? You want to make fun of Jesus, like, "Still sleeping outside? Still don't have anywhere to lay your head? Hey, Peter. You still don't have any silver and gold, huh? [I just know 00:42:08] the dollar is about to collapse and you need to get into that stuff."
Look. It's not about a building unless you're a Roman Catholic. You want to be in a church that has a fancy building? Go to the Roman Catholic Church down the street. This building is as fancy as we will ever have or ever need.
Jeremiah 10, let's go into the next portion because the first portion had to do with idolatry, graven images, the gold plating, the silver plating. It said in verse 10, "But the Lord is the true God; he is the living God, and an everlasting King. At his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation. Thus shall ye say unto them, the gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth, and from under these heavens. He hath made the earth by his power, he hath established the world by his wisdom, and hath stretched out the heavens by his discretion."
This is in contrast to the gods of the heathen that can't do anything. They're made up by man. Their carved and melted by man's device.
"When he uttereth his voice, there's a multitude of waters in the heavens, and he causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of his treasures. Every man is brutish in his knowledge." Brutish, again, means stupid or foolish or ignorant. "Every founder is confounded by the graven image, for the molten image is falsehood, and there's no breath in them. They're vanity, and the work of errors, in the time of their visitation they shall perish. The portion of Jacob is not like them: for he is the former of all things; and Israel is the rod of his inheritance: The Lord of hosts is his name."
Then he changed his gears in verse 17: "Gather up thy wares out of the land, O inhabitant of the fortress. For thus sayeth the Lord, Behold, I will sling out the inhabitants of the land at this once, and will distress them, that they may find this so." Again, pretty much every chapter he just harps on that again how the land is going to be destroyed.
Verse 19, this is Jeremiah giving his personal feelings here: "Woe is me for my hurt! My wound is grievous; but I said, truly this is a grief, and I must bear it. My tabernacle is spoiled, and all my cords are broken: my children are gone forth of me, and they are not: there is none to stretch forth my tent any more, and to set up my curtains." Again, the tabernacle is referring to a tent that he lives in, his shelter. The cords have to do with the cords that you use to install a tent.
Verse 21: "For the pastors are become brutish, and have not sought the Lord: therefore they shall not prosper, and all their flocks shall be scattered." Now, the pastor's here, the shepherds of the flock, he says, "They're stupid. The pastors are become brutish."
What does it mean to be brutish? The way to understand this word, I keep saying it just means stupid. To give you a little more depth of the word, a brute, when you think of someone being a brute, maybe you might think of people the way that they talked many decades ago. Maybe a woman might say, "Oh, you brute!" You know what I'm talking about?
A brute is the type of guy that we would just call him like a big dumb animal. Have you never heard of a guy be ridiculed as [being 00:45:38], "Oh, that guy is just kind of a big dumb animal." Maybe a guy that was a jock in school and he wasn't really that smart, wasn't really an intellectual. He's just kind of a brute. You picture somebody who's kind of big and strong but they're dumb and they just kind of come busting in and don't really know how to act, don't really know how to have an intelligent conversation, just kind of a big dumb animal. That's what a brute is.
The Bible is saying, "The pastors are become brutish," meaning that they don't have any intellect. They're just stupid. They're just dumb. There's no depth there. He says, "And they've not sought the Lord," so they're not spiritual and they're not intellectual. They're just all carnal, just a big dumb animal. "Therefore, they shall not prosper and all their flocks shall be scattered."
What does it mean when it says their flocks shall be scattered? If you think about it, our goal here at Faithful Word Baptist Church is that the flock here would be preserved and not scattered. What I mean by that is that we would want people to stay in church and if they don't stay in church here, then we would want them when they leave here to go be a part of another Fundamental Baptist Church that's teaching the Bible. That's okay too.
Everybody doesn't have to go here. People live in all different places and go to all different churches but we want the people that are in this building tonight to continue in the faith and that 5 years from now you would be found serving Christ, you would be found in a Baptist Church, you would be still loving the Lord, following the Lord, reading your Bible, doing [so many 00:47:25].
The flock being scattered is basically what you see where the people that are in attendance tonight, if we were to find them 5 years from now, half of them are out of church or they're going to some big liberal mega fun center where they're just dancing around and having a 20-minute sermon at or whatever, and they go to you know so-and-so the Community Church. That's just some big liberal fun center playground for spiritual babies to go play on, like a McDonald's Funland or something for the soul. The McDonald's playground for the soul.
I mean, the spirit babes in Christ, they drive right by the steakhouse. Mom and Dad are thinking, "You know, that steak house looks pretty good. We could probably get a really good meal there." Then the little brats: "Waa, at McDonald's. I want the playground. I want the playground. I want the toy." Then, here's the thing. We have these sniveling, whining babes in Christ: "Waa! Give me my toy. Waa! I wanna go down the slide. Waa! I wanna play the ball."
It's like, "Well, son wouldn't you like this fine dining? Here's a five-star meal." "Yeah, but over there, I can spend my tokens and I can get all my little tickets and get all my little trinkets where I turn in 5,000 tickets and get something that's worth 10 cents. I can get a plastic ring."
This is what people are doing today spiritually. They'll trade in the strong need of the word. They'll trade in fine dining and five-star meals and they'll go down the street to McDonald's Baptist, Burger King Baptist, Jack in the Box Baptist. Pastor Ronald McDonald is over there for them; Pastor Sanders, Colonel Pastor Sanders. They go to all this spiritual junk food because they get a toy, because it's a fancy building, because they love the worship band. Who cares that the doctrine is garbage or actually doctrine is not garbage because there's no doctrine? It's about as spiritually nutritious for you as high fructose corn syrup.
I mean, you ask these people, "Hey, where do you go to church. I go to HFCS. I go to HFCS, you know, [stands for 00:49:57], you know, high fructose corn syrup." To them, it stands for the Highlands, high fructose [inaudible 00:50:05], Highland Foothill Christian [sign says 00:50:13]. Come on. Help me out. We have 200 minds here. What's the S stand for?
"Yeah, I go to the Heavenly Father's Christian Sanctuary." It's spiritually devoid of nutrition but the pastor is so sweet, high fructose corn syrup sweet too, so sweet it will make you sick.
When you get older, you don't really crave sweets as much as little kids do. It's called growing up and maturing. We have a lot of spiritual babes in Christ that [seek after 00:50:55] and here's the thing. If our flock were to be scattered, that would be where you'll end up, in one of those places; or you'd just be totally out of church. That's the scattering of the flock.
If people go to a different church that's still a doctrinally sound Baptist Church, that's not scattering. I mean, that's good, that's fine. We send out people to start churches or you just move because you make a geographic move for whatever reason, no problem. I'm telling you, when the pastors are brutish and they're not seeking the Lord, the flocks end up getting scattered. Why? Because the stupid Pastor doesn't teach deep doctrine. Then he creates a bunch of shallow Christian so that's why they're easily tossed to and fro where they'll get caught up in the fun center or get caught up in these other false churches and they'll be scattered from being a Bible-believing Baptist.
You say, "Why do you keep saying Baptist, right? Why every Baptist?" Because everybody else is teaching heresy like 99% of the time. Look. Don't sit there and say, "Why does it have to be baptized?" Look. Theoretically, there could be a church out there that's a great church that doesn't have Baptist in the name and they're all out there. Guess what. 99.9% of good churches have Baptist in the name.
You can find a non-denom Church that's doctrinally sound. It's out there. It exists, but do you really want that goes through the thousands of junky churches? I mean, that's like saying, "Well, there's a healthy fast food out there," but you'd have to go through a lot of junk to find it.
Look. Here's what I always tell people. Even with them being a Baptist, there's a lot of junk out there. Even within the Baptist. Here's what I always tell them: "When you go outside of Baptist, it's a jungle out there. It's a jungle out there." You might find something good but I'm telling you, it's rough out there. Just to find eternal security of the believer and just to find the King James Version, good luck finding that in a community church.
I digress. Verse 22: "Behold, the noise of the bruit is come, and a great commotion out of the north country," referring to Bablylon, "To make the cities of Judah desolate, and a den of dragons. O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself. It is not in man that walketh to direct his steps. O Lord, correct me, but with judgment; not in thine anger, lest thy bring me to nothing. Pour out thy fury upon the heathen that know thee not, and upon the families that call not on thy name: for they have eaten up Jacob, and devoured him, and consumed him, and have made his habitation desolate."
Just one last thought here in this chapter. What he's saying here is he doesn't want God to come down on him with the full force of his wrath. He's explaining: "It's not in man to direct his way." What's he saying there? Everybody is a sinner. We're all made of clay. We've all sinned and come short of the glory of God. There's none righteous. No, not one. We're all going to make mistakes.
He says, "God, I know I'm gonna do wrong and I'm gonna need to be judged. I'm gonna need to be punished. But God, I want you to judge me but don't do it in anger, Lord." He's saying, "Go easy on me." He doesn't want no chastisement in his life because we all need chastisement in our life to keep us on the right track, just like children need chastisement from their parents. He's saying, "Go easy on me, God. Pour out the wrath on the people that aren't even saved, of these wicked people that are invading us. The Babylonians, what about them? Pour out your wrath and fury on the people that are destroying our nation but go easy on us that are saved, that are your people, Lord."
What's he doing? He's just praying here, just making supplication and just asking God to be merciful unto him. He's admitting his fault, admitting the faults of his people but he's asking God for mercy in his judgment. Let's bow our heads and have a word of prayer.
Father, thank you so much for this chapter, Lord. I pray that we would just get the main message of this chapter, Lord, which is about graven images. Help us to realize that graven images are something that is sinful; whether we make them, whether we bow down to them, or whether we serve them, Lord. Help us to just avoid these things and just stay away from that sin or letting that sin creep into our lives, Lord. None of us has ever seen you, Lord. None of us has ever seen any legitimate image of you, so help us not to have any images that we cling to and say, "Well, this is Jesus, or, "This is God." Please just help everyone who's here, Lord, to be in church 5 years from now, 10 years from now. Help the flock not to be scattered, Lord, but help us to teach sound doctrine here and that we would all be rooted and grounded in the faith with a deep foundation that we would not be tossed to and fro with [every winded 00:55:59] doctrine. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.