Eastons Bible Dictionary

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Idol

 

Idol -
(1.) Heb. aven, "nothingness;" "vanity" (Isa. 66:3; 41:29; Deut. 32:21; 1 Kings 16:13; Ps. 31:6; Jer. 8:19, etc.).


(2.) 'Elil, "a thing of naught" (Ps. 97:7; Isa. 19:3); a word of contempt, used of the gods of Noph (Ezek. 30:13).


(3.) 'Emah, "terror," in allusion to the hideous form of idols (Jer. 50:38).


(4.) Miphletzeth, "a fright;" "horror" (1 Kings 15:13; 2 Chr. 15:16).


(5.) Bosheth, "shame;" "shameful thing" (Jer. 11:13; Hos. 9:10); as characterizing the obscenity of the worship of Baal.


(6.) Gillulim, also a word of contempt, "dung;" "refuse" (Ezek. 16:36; 20:8; Deut. 29:17, marg.).


(7.) Shikkuts, "filth;" "impurity" (Ezek. 37:23; Nah. 3:6).


(8.) Semel, "likeness;" "a carved image" (Deut. 4:16).


(9.) Tselem, "a shadow" (Dan. 3:1; 1 Sam. 6:5), as distinguished from the "likeness," or the exact counterpart.

(10.) Temunah, "similitude" (Deut. 4:12-19). Here Moses forbids the several forms of Gentile idolatry.

(11.) 'Atsab, "a figure;" from the root "to fashion," "to labour;" denoting that idols are the result of man's labour (Isa. 48:5; Ps. 139:24, "wicked way;" literally, as some translate, "way of an idol").

(12.) Tsir, "a form;" "shape" (Isa. 45:16).

(13.) Matztzebah, a "statue" set up (Jer. 43:13); a memorial stone like that erected by Jacob (Gen. 28:18; 31:45; 35:14, 20), by Joshua (4:9), and by Samuel (1 Sam. 7:12). It is the name given to the statues of Baal (2 Kings 3:2; 10:27).

(14.) Hammanim, "sun-images." Hamman is a synonym of Baal, the sun-god of the Phoenicians (2 Chr. 34:4, 7; 14:3, 5; Isa. 17:8).

(15.) Maskith, "device" (Lev. 26:1; Num. 33:52). In Lev. 26:1, the words "image of stone" (A.V.) denote "a stone or cippus with the image of an idol, as Baal, Astarte, etc." In Ezek. 8:12, "chambers of imagery" (maskith), are "chambers of which the walls are painted with the figures of idols;" comp. ver. 10, 11.

(16.) Pesel, "a graven" or "carved image" (Isa. 44:10-20). It denotes also a figure cast in metal (Deut. 7:25; 27:15; Isa. 40:19; 44:10).

(17.) Massekah, "a molten image" (Deut. 9:12; Judg. 17:3, 4).

(18.) Teraphim, pl., "images," family gods (penates) worshipped by Abram's kindred (Josh. 24:14). Put by Michal in David's bed (Judg. 17:5; 18:14, 17, 18, 20; 1 Sam. 19:13).

"Nothing can be more instructive and significant than this multiplicity and variety of words designating the instruments and inventions of idolatry."

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