Jud 18:1-31 Some Problems with Idolatry CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
Idolatry, in and of itself, is unlawful [Exodus 20:4-6] and consequential in that it continues through successive generations and incurs the wrath of God. In this passage, the idolatry of Micah gets transferred to the Danites and ultimately leads to their downfall and the captivity of the ten northern tribes. We’ll examine some of the problems with idolatry that are found here.
The Priests are hired not called – v.4-6 – Jesus called these hirelings in Jn 10:12-13. These are guys that get into the ministry for “filthy lucre,” [1 Peter 5:2]. Since they are not called they cannot do God’s work though they pretend that they can, v. 5-6. Unfortunately for their followers, they don’t learn that they have been misled until it is too late, Matthew 23:15.
The images lead to superstitious dependence – v.17-18 – There is a superstition associated with idolatry that imparts supernatural power to the images, Acts 17:22-23. But the images are powerless [Psalms 115:4-8]. They are nothing more than trinkets with as much value as good luck charms. Nevertheless, the adherents believe that they must have the images in order to have the blessings and favor of God
The priests are political charlatans – v.19-20 – This fellow had been hired by Micah and when he found that he could be promoted to a tribal priest he was glad for the promotion. A priest like this is obligated to men not to God. Compare John 11:47-50.
The idolaters are thieves and murderers – v.24-25 – People complain that religions are the cause of wars. And to an extent they are correct. With true Christianity we don’t have this problem, but with religion we do. Idolaters are not afraid to steal and to kill to fund their religions and further their causes. Compare Matthew 3:14, 29-32.
Their idolatry eventually leads to their destruction – v.30-31 – this idolatry goes from Micah’s house to the tribe of Dan where it remains the entire time the house of God is in Shiloh and then it proceeds to the ten northern tribes under Jeroboam [1 Kings 12:27-33] which led ultimately to their captivity [2 Kings 17:22-23].