Pharisees • idols

Are all pictures and statues graven images of idols? No.


Do you have pictures of your family?  We do.

Do you worship "graven images" of your mother?  Neither do we.




see the examples of Moses, Beseleel, and King Solomon


In Exodus 20:4-5 God condemned the carving of statues for the sake of worshiping them as idols. Recall that God Himself ordered the construction of other statues to serve His purposes. Exodus 25:16-20, 37:6-9; Numbers 21:6-9; 3 Kings (1 Kings) 6:23, 7:23-29; 1 Paralipomenon (1 Chronicles) 28:18-19; 2 Paralipomenon (2 Chronicles) 3:10


Moses commanded by God to make statues of cherubim for the Ark of the Covenant:


“And thou shalt put in the ark [of the Covenant] the testimony which I will give thee.  Thou shalt make also a propitiatory of the purest gold: the length thereof shall be two cubits and a half, and the breadth a cubit and a half.  Thou shalt make also two cherubims of beaten gold, on the two sides of the oracle.  Let one cherub be on the one side, and the other on the other.  Let them cover both sides of the propitiatory, spreading their wings, and covering the oracle, and let them look one towards the other, their faces being turned towards the propitiatory wherewith the ark is to be covered.” Exodus 25:16-20


Moses commanded by God to make a brazen serpent to heal the punished Israelites:


“Wherefore the Lord sent among the people fiery serpents, which bit them and killed many of them.  Upon which they came to Moses, and said: We have sinned, because we have spoken against the Lord and thee: pray that he may take away these serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people.  And the Lord said to him: Make a brazen serpent, and set it up for a sign: whosoever being struck shall look on it, shall live.  Moses therefore made a brazen serpent, and set it up for a sign: which when they that were bitten looked upon, they were healed.” Numbers 21:6-9


Beseleel commanded by God to make statues of cherubim for the Ark and Tabernacle:


He made also the propitiatory, that is, the oracle, of the purest gold, two cubits and a half in length, and a cubit and a half in breadth.  Two cherubims also of beaten gold, which he set on the two sides of the propitiatory:  One cherub in the top of one side, and the other cherub in the top of the other side: two cherubims at the two ends of the propitiatory,  Spreading their wings, and covering the propitiatory, and looking one towards the other, and towards it. Exodus 37:6-9


King Solomon made statues of cherubim, lions, and oxen for the temple:


“And he made in the oracle two cherubims of olive tree, of ten cubits in height.”

3 Kings (1 Kings) 6:23


“…And between the little crowns and the ledges were lions, and oxen, and cherubims…”

3 Kings (1 Kings) 7:23-29


“And for the altar of incense, he gave the purest gold: and to make the likeness of the chariot of the cherubims spreading their wings, and covering the ark of the covenant of the Lord. All these things, said he, came to me written by the hand of the Lord that I might understand all the works of the pattern.”

1 Paralipomenon (1 Chronicles) 28:18-19


“He made also in the house of the holy of holies two cherubims of image work: and he overlaid them with gold.” 2 Paralipomenon (2 Chronicles) 3:10


Like Moses, Beseleel, and King Solomon,two millennia of Catholics have made sacred art without sin or injury to God.