[CF Devotionals] 2006-10-29 - Daniel

Installment 24

As we read the story of Israel in the Old Testament, we observe that the people and the leaders did not always successfully resist the temptation to worship those shiny, impressive-looking statutes. It is for this reason that the prophets inveigh so heavily against them. Indeed, Isaiah is at his sarcastic and rhetorical best when he ridicules the idols of the surrounding nations. He satirizes idol worship by reducing it to a fetish" 1

"The blacksmith takes a tool and works with it in the coals; he shapes an idol with hammers, he forges it with the might of his arm. He gets hungry and loses his strength; he drinks no water and grows faint. The carpenter measures with a line and makes an outline with a marker; he roughs it out with chisels and marks it with compasses. He shapes it in the form of man, of man in all his glory, that it may dwell in a shrine. He cut down cedars, or perhaps took a cypress or oak. He let it grow among the trees of the forest, or planted a pine, and the rain made it grow. It is man's fuel for burning; some of it he takes and warms himself. He kindles a fire and bakes bread. But he also fashions a god and worships it; he makes an idol and bows down to it. Half of the wood he burns in the fire; over it he prepares his meal. He roasts his meat and eats his fill. He also warms himself and says, 'Ah! I am warm; I see the fire.' From the rest he makes a god, his idol; he bows down to it and worships. He prays to it and says, 'Save me; you are my god.' They know nothing, they understand nothing; their eyes are plastered over so they cannot see, and their minds closed so they cannot understand. No one stops to think, no one has the knowledge or understanding to say, "Half of it I used for fuel; I even bake bread over its coals. I roasted meat and I ate. Shall I make a detestable thing from what is left? Shall I bow down to a block of wood?" He feeds on ashes, a deluded heart misleads him; he cannot save himself, or say, "Is not this thing in my right hand a lie?" (Isaiah 44:12-20).

Apparently Nebuchadnezzar hadn't read Isaiah.

1 Longman III, Tremper, The NIV Application Commentary, "Daniel" Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, MI, 1999, p. 105

To be continued.

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