Idol = an image or representation of a god used as an object of worship.

2 Kings 23:6-16 The Message (MSG)

4-9 Then the king ordered Hilkiah the high priest, his associate priest, and The Temple sentries to clean house—to get rid of everything in The Temple of God that had been made for worshiping Baal and Asherah and the cosmic powers. He had them burned outside Jerusalem in the fields of Kidron and then disposed of the ashes in Bethel. He fired the pagan priests whom the kings of Judah had hired to supervise the local sex-and-religion shrines in the towns of Judah and neighborhoods of Jerusalem. In a stroke he swept the country clean of the polluting stench of the round-the-clock worship of Baal, sun and moon, stars—all the so-called cosmic powers. He took the obscene phallic Asherah pole from The Temple of God to the Valley of Kidron outside Jerusalem, burned it up, then ground up the ashes and scattered them in the cemetery. He tore out the rooms of the male sacred prostitutes that had been set up in The Temple of God; women also used these rooms for weavings for Asherah. He swept the outlying towns of Judah clean of priests and smashed the sex-and-religion shrines where they worked their trade from one end of the country to the other—all the way from Geba to Beersheba. He smashed the sex-and-religion shrine that had been set up just to the left of the city gate for the private use of Joshua, the city mayor. Even though these sex-and-religion priests did not defile the Altar in The Temple itself, they were part of the general priestly corruption and had to go.

10-11 Then Josiah demolished the Topheth, the iron furnace griddle set up in the Valley of Ben Hinnom for sacrificing children in the fire. No longer could anyone burn son or daughter to the god Molech. He hauled off the horse statues honoring the sun god that the kings of Judah had set up near the entrance to The Temple. They were in the courtyard next to the office of Nathan-Melech, the warden. He burned up the sun-chariots as so much rubbish.

12-15 The king smashed all the altars to smithereens—the altar on the roof shrine of Ahaz, the various altars the kings of Judah had made, the altars of Manasseh that littered the courtyard of The Temple—he smashed them all, pulverized the fragments, and scattered their dust in the Valley of Kidron. The king proceeded to make a clean sweep of all the sex-and-religion shrines that had proliferated east of Jerusalem on the south slope of Abomination Hill, the ones Solomon king of Israel had built to the obscene Sidonian sex goddess Ashtoreth, to Chemosh the dirty-old-god of the Moabites, and to Milcom the depraved god of the Ammonites. He tore apart the altars, chopped down the phallic Asherah-poles, and scattered old bones over the sites. Next, he took care of the altar at the shrine in Bethel that Jeroboam son of Nebat had built—the same Jeroboam who had led Israel into a life of sin. He tore apart the altar, burned down the shrine leaving it in ashes, and then lit fire to the phallic Asherah-pole.

16 As Josiah looked over the scene, he noticed the tombs on the hillside. He ordered the bones removed from the tombs and had them cremated on the ruined altars, desacralizing the evil altars. This was a fulfillment of the word of God spoken by the Holy Man years before when Jeroboam had stood by the altar at the sacred convocation.

Elijah and the Prophets of Baal.  Good News Translation (GNT)

1 Kings 18:18  “I’m not the troublemaker,” Elijah answered. “You are—you and your father. You are disobeying the Lord’s commands and worshiping the idols of Baal. 19 Now order all the people of Israel to meet me at Mount Carmel. Bring along the 450 prophets of Baal and the 400 prophets of the goddess Asherah who are supported by Queen Jezebel.”

20 So king Ahab summoned all the Israelites and the prophets of Baal to meet at Mount Carmel. 21 Elijah went up to the people and said, “How much longer will it take you to make up your minds? If the Lord is God, worship him; but if Baal is God, worship him!” But the people didn’t say a word. 22 Then Elijah said, “I am the only prophet of the Lord still left, but there are 450 prophets of Baal.

Verses with idols

Verses with magic

1 Samuel 5:1-7 Expanded Bible (EXB)

Trouble for the Philistines

After the Philistines [4:1] had captured the Ark of God [4:3], they took it from Ebenezer [4:1] to Ashdod [C one of the five chief cities of the Philistines]. They carried it into Dagon’s [C a major Philistine god, perhaps a storm god] temple and put it next to Dagon [C to symbolize that Israel’s god was now on the side of Dagon]. When the people of Ashdod rose early the next morning, they found that Dagon had fallen on his face on the ground before the Ark of the Lord [C as if in worship]. So they put Dagon back in his place. The next morning when they rose, they again found Dagon fallen face-down on the ground before the Ark of the Lord. His head and hands had broken off and were lying ·in the doorway [on the threshold; C the treatment given corpses of enemy soldiers]. Only his ·body [trunk] was ·still in one piece [intact; left to him]. So, ·even today [to this day], Dagon’s priests and others who enter his temple at Ashdod refuse to step on the ·doorsill [threshold of Dagon].

The ·Lord was hard [L hand of the Lord was heavy] on the people of Ashdod and ·their neighbors [its environs]. He ·caused them to suffer [ravaged/terrified them] and ·gave them [struck/afflicted them with] ·growths on their skin [tumors; or hemorrhoids]. When the people of Ashdod saw what was happening, they said, “The Ark of the God of Israel can’t stay with us. ·God is punishing [L His hand is heavy on] us and Dagon our god.”

Expanded Bible (EXB) Judges 16:22-30 

22 But his hair began to grow again after it was shaved off.

23 The Philistine ·rulers [lords] gathered to celebrate and to offer a great sacrifice to their god Dagon. They said, “Our god has handed Samson our enemy ·over to us [into our hand].” 24 When the people saw him, they praised their god, saying,

“This man ·destroyed [laid waste; ravaged] our country.
    He ·killed many of us [L multiplied our dead]!
But our god handed over
    our enemy to us.”

25 ·While the people were enjoying the celebration [When they were in high spirits; L When their heart was good], they said, “Bring Samson out to ·perform for [entertain; amuse] us.” So they brought Samson from the prison, and he ·performed for [entertained; amused] them. They made him stand between the pillars. 26 Samson said to the ·servant [youth; young man] holding his hand, “Let me feel the pillars that hold up the ·temple [house] so I can lean against them.” 27 Now the ·temple [house] was full of men and women. All the Philistine ·rulers [lords] were there, and about three thousand men and women were on the roof watching Samson perform. 28 Then Samson prayed to the Lord, “·Lord God [Sovereign Lord], remember me. God, please give me strength one more time so I ·can pay these Philistines back [avenge the Philistines] for putting out my two eyes!” 29 Then Samson ·turned to [grasped] the two center pillars ·that supported the whole temple [L on which the house rested]. He braced himself between the two pillars, with his right hand on one and his left hand on the other. 30 Samson said, “Let me die with these Philistines!” Then he pushed ·as hard as he could [with all his strength], causing the temple to fall on the ·rulers [lords] and all the people in it. So Samson killed more of the Philistines when he died than ·when he was alive [during his lifetime].


The Philistines people living in Ashdod were worshiping the fish-god named Dagon.

“The etymology of the word is uncertain, but some scholars associate it with the Hebrew word dagh (fish).”

Judges 16:23  The Phi·lisʹtine lords gathered together to offer a great sacrifice to Daʹgon+their god and to celebrate, for they were saying: “Our god has given Samson our enemy into our hand!”

1 Samuel 5: When they got up early in the morning on the following day, there was Daʹgon fallen facedown on the ground before the Ark of Jehovah. The head of Daʹgon and the palms of both his hands were cut off and were lying on the threshold. Only the fish part* had been left intact.  That is why to this day, the priests of Daʹgon and all those who enter the house of Daʹgon do not walk on the threshold of Daʹgon in Ashʹdod.

2 Chronicles 26: He went out and fought against the Phi·lisʹtines+ and broke through the wall of Gath,+ the wall of Jabʹneh,+ and the wall of Ashʹdod.+ Then he built cities in the territory of Ashʹdod and among the Phi·lisʹtines.

Joshua 15:46  from Ekʹron westward, all that is alongside Ashʹdod and their settlements.

1 Samuel 5:1 When the Phi·lisʹtines captured the Ark of the true God, they brought it from Eb·en·eʹzer to Ashʹdod.


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