Thursday, April 28, 2011

Catechism #96-98

For some reason, God is trying to drive this home for me this week. Not only was the second commandment the focus of our family devotions but also of my reading in Calvin's Institutes (Book 1, ch. 11).

Question #96
: What is God's will for us in the second commandment?

Answer: That we in no way make any image of God nor worship him in any other way than he has commanded in his Word (Deut. 4:15-19; Isa. 40:18-25; Acts 17:29; Rom. 1:22-23; Lev. 10:1-7; 1 Sam. 15:22-23; John 4:23-24).

Question #97: May we then not make any image at all?

Answer: God can not and may not be visibly portrayed in any way. Although creatures may be portrayed, yet God forbids making or having such images if one's intention is to worship them or to serve God through them (Ex. 34:13-14, 17; 2 Kings 18:4-5)

Question #98: But may not images be permitted in the churches as teaching aids for the unlearned?

Answer: No, we shouldn't try to be wiser than God. He wants his people instructed by the living preaching of his Word—not by idols that cannot even talk (Rom. 10:14-15, 17; 2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Pet. 1:19; Jer. 10:8; Hab. 2:18-20)

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