In preparing this article, I looked at some of the definitions of idolatry from Christian sources. They mention several things like worship of the sun, moon, or stars. They mention statues and pictures. Some go on to mention things in our everyday lives like our phones, money, and entertainers. Most of their definitions fall short. Let’s take a closer look.
To their credit, some of them do actually mention loving something more than G-d as being idolatry. But, for the most part, they refer to the worship of idols as that of worshiping statues or other carved images and more ethereal thing such as personal appearance, personal prosperity, and other such things which can be more appropriately defined as vanity.
In the Hebrew language, we find the term avodah zarah which can be defined as strange worship or foreign worship. But what does this really mean? In ancient times, just like today, there were many different religions. The church decided long ago to classify these as pagan. The word pagan, however, comes from the Latin word paganus, meaning country people. It was used like the modern word hick or bumpkin. It was a derogatory way of referring to such people as ignorant or untrained. So calling something a pagan religion is merely calling it a religion of the ignorant villagers. I feel it is only fair to these ignorant villagers to point out that the church adopted much of its beliefs from them. The church will tell you that they only did this as a way to “save” the pagans by giving them something they were familiar with rolled into the new religion of Christianity.
Avodah zarah or strange worship is something simpler. When HaShem gave the Torah, it outlined exactly how the Children of Israel were to worship. They were instructed not to learn the ways of the nations around them. To worship as the foreigners do is foreign or strange worship. This is the concept of idolatry being described in the Bible. It is not referring to liking one’s phone too much or having a crush on a popular singer. While these things may be unhealthy spiritually, they are not idolatry. They are not strange worship as described in the Torah. Now, if one were to bow down and worship their phone, believe that their singer was their god, that would be idolatry. For all of the so-called church scholars, they have done no less than dumb down the populace. They teach a concept as being Biblical which has almost nothing to do with the Biblical concept of idolatry.
Why would they do such a thing? They had no choice. At its core, the church claims to be the next step in the evolution of the Hebrew Bible. They claim to believe in and serve the G-d of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.They claim that HaShem sent His son to save the world. They claim that worshiping Jesus is the same as worshipping HaShem, that they are one and the same. This created a problem for the church. They had to explain how HaShem had a human child. So, they made up the idea of the holy ghost which impregnated the virgin, who in turn, gave birth to Jesus. This is the same way Hercules from Roman mythology was born. This may have sounded good to the unlearned, country people of the time, the pagans. They were already familiar with such stories. None of it fits in with the system of worship outlined in the Torah. Thus, it can only be classified as strange worship or avodah zarah. This is the reason they had to change the meaning of idolatry. They were guilty of it.
Christians of today have no idea they are committing idolatry. On some level, it isn’t really their fault. They read their new testament and believe what it says. They trust that what it says lines up with the Hebrew Scriptures, which they accept as true. They aren’t encouraged to read their old testament. I’ve had pastors admit to me that they didn’t really know that much about the old testament. Even with all of the changes that were done to the scriptures, there is still enough there to show that Christianity is, in fact, avodah zarah. When they do read it, they only read the parts that were altered to fit the Christian narrative. If you have an interest in reading the Hebrew Bible please follow this link. The Complete Jewish Bible. It is not the same as the old testament. If, as a Christian, you think you are worshipping the G-d of Abraham, know this. There is nothing in the Hebrew Scriptures, His instructions, to support what you are doing. I hope you will take the time to follow the link I gave you above. It might just be the most important thing you do.
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