Lord's Day 24

Week 23 :: Week 24 :: Week 25


Ancient cultures had a market on the crafting of graven images that represented the gods of their regions. In Isaiah 44 we find a scorching indictment of this practice. The prophet shows how a carpenter uses a piece of wood to cook his food and heat his house, and with the rest, he makes his god, and prays to it for deliverance. 

We may not have a mantle full of idols that we worship today, but there are still a multitude of graven images in our lives, idols that rob our worship and affection. The graven images that compete for our attention may be more subtle, but they are just as pernicious. The buildings we have built, our denominational institutions, our respected leaders; the things which were meant to assist us our worship of God can easily become the objects of our affection and worship. We become more committed to that which enables us to worship rather than the one we are called to worship. 

There are some who object to the idea of God being jealous of our worship, but surely there are some occasions when jealousy is warranted. A husband or wife has the right to be jealous of their spouses’ intimacy and devotion. When someone or something else gets the attention that a spouse deserves, the marriage becomes off balance and unhealthy. As the apostle teaches in Ephesians 5, marriage is a beautiful analogy of our relationship with God, and God’s desire is that we would love Him before anything else in all creation 


Gracious God, we confess that we are prone to worship the idols that we have created with our own hands, the symbols of your love and grace quickly become the objects of our adoration. Teach us to cast down our idols and to worship you in Spirit and Truth. In Jesus’ name, and for his sake, we pray. Amen. 

Question 49

Q. 49. Which is the second commandment?

A. The second commandment is, 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: and showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

Scripture Proofs

Ex. 20:46.

 “You shall not make for yourself a carved 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. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.

Question 50

Q. 50. What is required in the second commandment?

A. The second commandment requireth the receiving, observing, and keeping pure and entire, all such religious worship and ordinances as God hath appointed in his Word.

Scripture Proofs

Deut. 32:46;

 he said to them, “Take to heart all the words by which I am warning you today, that you may command them to your children, that they may be careful to do all the words of this law.

Matt. 28:20;

teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Acts 2:42.

And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.

Question 51

Q. 51. What is forbidden in the second commandment?

A. The second commandment forbiddeth the worshipping of God by images, or any other way not appointed in his Word.

Scripture Proofs

Deut. 4:15-19;

“Therefore watch yourselves very carefully. Since you saw no form on the day that the Lord spoke to you at Horeb out of the midst of the fire, beware lest you act corruptly by making a carved image for yourselves, in the form of any figure, the likeness of male or female, the likeness of any animal that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged bird that flies in the air, the likeness of anything that creeps on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the water under the earth. And beware lest you raise your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, you be drawn away and bow down to them and serve them, things that the Lord your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven.

Ex 32:5;

When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it. And Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord.”

Ex 32:8;

They have turned aside quickly out of the way that I commanded them. They have made for themselves a golden calf and have worshiped it and sacrificed to it and said, ‘These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!’ ”

Deut. 12:31-32.

You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way, for every abominable thing that the Lord hates they have done for their gods, for they even burn their sons and their daughters in the fire to their gods.

“Everything that I command you, you shall be careful to do. You shall not add to it or take from it.

Question 52

Q. 52. What are the reasons annexed to the second commandment?

A. The reasons annexed to the second commandment are, God’s sovereignty over us, his propriety in us, and the zeal he hath to his own worship.

Scripture Proofs

Ps. 95:2-3;

Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!

For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods.

Ps. 95:6;

Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker;

Ps. 45:11;

and the king will desire your beauty.

Since he is your lord, bow to him.

Ex. 34:13-14.

You shall tear down their altars and break their pillars and cut down their Asherim (for you shall worship no other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God),