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Old 06-19-2008, 09:12 AM
 
Location: West Texas
2,440 posts, read 4,833,708 times
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I hope someone can straighten me out... I'm having problems with the way the Commandments are interpreted (by what they say). I'm sure the many Christians and Catholics here will have their excuses and deflections, so I'm really curious about the explaination for what appears to be a hypocracy....:

Doesn't the First Commandment (from Exodus 20:3-20:5) say:

"Do not have any other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God..."

Then why all these "idols" or statues of Christ, Mary, and other saints, etc. exist throughout many churches? Why the prayers to Mary and St. Christopher (patron saint of travellers) and others? Why all the crosses, etc.? Seems to me to go against everything in the First Commandment. Please help me get my mind around this one.
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Old 06-19-2008, 09:22 AM
 
Location: South Seattle Suburbs
3,340 posts, read 5,300,129 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathagos View Post
I hope someone can straighten me out... I'm having problems with the way the Commandments are interpreted (by what they say). I'm sure the many Christians and Catholics here will have their excuses and deflections, so I'm really curious about the explaination for what appears to be a hypocracy....:

Doesn't the First Commandment (from Exodus 20:3-20:5) say:

"Do not have any other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God..."

Then why all these "idols" or statues of Christ, Mary, and other saints, etc. exist throughout many churches? Why the prayers to Mary and St. Christopher (patron saint of travellers) and others? Why all the crosses, etc.? Seems to me to go against everything in the First Commandment. Please help me get my mind around this one.
Well, first, Catholics ARE Christians. Second, they don't pray to Mary and the saints -- they ask for intercession on their behalf.

As for the commandment itself, different believers come at it from different perspectives. To some, it simply means you don't put anything before God, period. To the Amish, it means their kids' dolls have blank faces, and that they refuse to have their pictures taken. Such things would amount to "graven images." (I'm not kidding.) Taking this to its logical conclusion, you couldn't have a statue of anything or a picture of anything. To others, the commandment is a warning not to make a god of anything, including money and power.

As a nonbeliever and former Catholic, I'll be interested to hear how other Christians approach this commandment.
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Old 06-19-2008, 09:28 AM
 
Location: West Texas
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I understand Catholics are Christians, but not all Christians are Catholic.
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Old 06-19-2008, 09:29 AM
 
Location: Pleasant Shade Tn
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Catholics do bow down to those images though...even if they're just asking for intercession, isnt that a risky thing to do-knowing how God feels about images?
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Old 06-19-2008, 09:32 AM
 
82 posts, read 223,213 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alicenavada View Post
Catholics do bow down to those images though...even if they're just asking for intercession, isnt that a risky thing to do-knowing how God feels about images?
I think the distinction is with actually worhipping the statues. I don't think the term "bow down" refers to the physical action of bowing, rather the act of being subserviant or doing it to honor the statue. For example, as a Lutheran, we kneel before the altar for communion, but we in no way are worshipping the altar. Does that make sense?
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Old 06-19-2008, 09:36 AM
 
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 10,959,017 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alicenavada View Post
Catholics do bow down to those images though...even if they're just asking for intercession, isnt that a risky thing to do-knowing how God feels about images?
Well, yes, you can look at it that way and that was one of the bases for a lot of protestant religions.

But you can ask the same question about all Christians bowing down to Jesus and praying to Jesus. Only one god, but somehow he splits into 3 gods but is still one god. And what about all those angels you can pray to and the protestant saints?

That is one of the beefs Muslims have with the Christian concept too - the original bible upon which the Koran was based, says only one god and no graven images, etc. They have proscriptions against photos. That's why they developed the ornate abstract art - to decorate but not have graven images.

And on and on it goes....
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Old 06-19-2008, 10:08 AM
 
Location: Maryland not Murlin
8,124 posts, read 19,810,046 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rathagos View Post
for I the Lord your God am a jealous God..."
If God is the only god then how can he be jealous. Or a better question; why would he be jealous, especially if he is supposed to be everything? Afraid of a little competition?
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Old 06-19-2008, 10:25 AM
 
7,780 posts, read 12,274,106 times
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Moved from R&P
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Old 06-19-2008, 10:36 AM
 
Location: Pleasant Shade Tn
2,214 posts, read 4,656,067 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
Well, yes, you can look at it that way and that was one of the bases for a lot of protestant religions.

But you can ask the same question about all Christians bowing down to Jesus and praying to Jesus. Only one god, but somehow he splits into 3 gods but is still one god. And what about all those angels you can pray to and the protestant saints?

That is one of the beefs Muslims have with the Christian concept too - the original bible upon which the Koran was based, says only one god and no graven images, etc. They have proscriptions against photos. That's why they developed the ornate abstract art - to decorate but not have graven images.

And on and on it goes....
Well, I feel that if God specifically had his people destroy graven images (that were used in worship) in the Hebrew Scriptures and warned against them repeatedly, he does not approve of images in worship at all. I for one will never use one or have one in my home.

I am a Christian and I do not bow down or pray to Jesus. He did not require worship but instead asked that we worship God. I don't believe he is part of a mysterious 'godhead' or that it is okay that we pray to or worship angels or saints either. I believe in praying to God...the God of Abraham-Jehovah.
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Old 06-19-2008, 11:08 AM
 
Location: egypt
1,215 posts, read 1,818,983 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alicenavada View Post
Well, I feel that if God specifically had his people destroy graven images (that were used in worship) in the Hebrew Scriptures and warned against them repeatedly, he does not approve of images in worship at all. I for one will never use one or have one in my home.

I am a Christian and I do not bow down or pray to Jesus. He did not require worship but instead asked that we worship God. I don't believe he is part of a mysterious 'godhead' or that it is okay that we pray to or worship angels or saints either. I believe in praying to God...the God of Abraham-Jehovah.
do you know that this concept typically the same concept of muslims about God

i really happy to know that there are some christians have these concepts

shapter 2
62 - Those who believe (in the Quran), and those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Christians and the Sabians, any who believe in God and the last day, and work righteousness, shall have their reward with their Lord: on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.
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