Unimaginable and Unrivaled

May 4, 2018 Preacher: Cole Daum Series: The 10 Commandments - Law & Grace

Topic: Foundations Scripture: Exodus 20:4– 20:6

Home Group Study                                                                  Sermon Date: May 4, 2018 Text: Exodus 20:4-6                                                                                                                          


Opening Discussion: Have you ever heard someone say, “I just can’t believe that a loving God would send someone to a horrible place like hell”? Are there passages in the Bible which reveal how God interacts with humanity which you struggle to accept? What we believe has no impact on the truth! Refusing to see and accept God as revealed in Scripture is the root of idolatry! Respond to this statement.

Observation What does God’s word say?

Read Exodus 20:4-6

As you observe what God’s word says, answer the following questions from the text(s):

  • What are the key words and phrases of the text? Is anything repeated?
  • What does this text reveal about human nature?
  • What does this text reveal about the character and purposes of God?

What are your observations? Remember: Proper interpretation requires a humble and submissive approach to the Bible which recognizes the authority of Scripture. “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble” (1 Peter 5:5b).

Meaning What does God’s word mean?

In verse 4 God prohibits “making for yourselves” any objects of worship. Does this include making any objects that represent Yaweh? What about pictures of Jesus or a crucifix? Why or why not? In verse 5 God says he will punish generational idolatry to the 3rd and 4th generation and verse 6 promises blessings out to “thousands”. Are these numbers to be taken literally? What is God communicating through the disparity in these numbers?

Read Acts 19: 24-27 What can we learn about the nature of idolatry from this passage?

Representations of God serve to “fix” Him in a particular state and time when His true nature is not limited by our physical universe or our time so any image of Him is a restriction. For instance, Jesus is not on the cross, He is in His rightful place of honor and power. This is a good reason to avoid physical representations of God, even those which attempt to capture a “snapshot” of the incarnation.

Application How must I change?

Is there a Truth to be believed?

The characteristics of idolatry mentioned in the sermon were: Guaranteed possession, Selfish, Easy, Convenient, Normal, Logical, Pleasing to senses, Indulgent and Erotic. Does our worship have characteristics of ancient idolatry?

Is there an Attitude to be fostered?

Should our motivation for worship be more about gaining God’s blessing or about availing others to the blessings that come from knowing God? If the former then what blessings are we lacking that we hope to gain?

Is there a Behavior to be changed?

Are our words and actions helping others see the true nature of God? Are our family members, friends and co-workers more likely to embrace Christianity because they know us or more likely to reject it because of our example? Can you think of ways that God has disciplined you to correct your misrepresentation of Him?

Read: Acts 17:22-31 What can we learn from Paul’s sermon that will help us properly represent God to the world?

Closing Prayer: Pray that God will shine the light of His truth into the dark and idolatrous areas of our lives so that we can be more useful in His kingdom and accomplish our purpose of making His name famous so that others may enjoy His eternal blessings

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