Deuteronomy 16:22
Neither shall you set you up any image; which the LORD your God hates.
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(22) Image.—Explained by Rashi of a single stone, whether statue or pillar.

16:18-22 Care is taken for the due administration of justice. All personal regards must be laid aside, so that right is done to all, and wrong to none. Care is taken to prevent following the idolatrous customs of the heathen. Nothing belies God more, or tends more to corrupt the minds of men, than representing and worshipping, by an image, that God, who is an almighty and eternal Spirit, present every where. Alas! even in gospel days, and under a better dispensation, established upon better promises, there is a tendency to set up idols, under one form or another, in the human heart.A grove ... - Render, Thou shalt not plant for thee any tree as an idol: literally as an Asherah," "i. e." an image of Astarte or Ashtaroth, the Phoenician goddess (compare Deuteronomy 7:5 note, Deuteronomy 7:13 note). The word is rendered "grove" by the King James Version also in Deuteronomy 7:5; Deuteronomy 12:3; Exodus 34:13; Judges 6:25, but cannot be maintained, for the word is connected with various verbs which are quite inapplicable to a grove. The wooden idol in question was the stem of a tree, stripped of its boughs, set upright in the ground, and rudely carved with emblems. 22. Neither shalt thou set thee up any image—erroneously rendered so for "pillar"; pillars of various kinds, and materials of wood or stone were erected in the neighborhood of altars. Sometimes they were conical or oblong, at other times they served as pedestals for the statues of idols. A superstitious reverence was attached to them, and hence they were forbidden. Heb. statue, whether with a picture or representation, or without it, as the idolaters used to worship smoothed and polished stones or pillars without any image upon them. Neither shalt thou set up any image,.... Graven or molten, of man, beast, fish, or fowl; the word signifies a "statue or pillar" (c) which was set up for idolatry; for, as Aben Ezra observes, what was not set up for idolatry was not forbidden, as when erected in memory of any action or remarkable event; see Joshua 22:10, &c.

which the Lord thy God hateth; as he does every species, of idolatry, or that has any tendency to it; it being so opposite to his being, perfections, and glory; and therefore nothing should be done like it, because it is so hateful to him.

(c) Sept. "statuam", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Tig. vers. Fagius, Drusius, Grotius, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator; so Ainsworth.

Neither shalt thou set thee up any image; which the LORD thy God hateth.
Verse 22. - Any image; any pillar, etc. The Hebrew word (מַצֵבָה, mazzebah) denotes generally any pillar or stone that is set up, whether as a memorial (Genesis 28:18), or as a sign (Exodus 24:4; Isaiah 19:19), or for purposes of utility or ornament (Jeremiah 43:13). Here, as in other passages, it is a pillar or statue set up as an object of worship (cf. 2 Kings 3:2; 2 Kings 10:26; Hosea 10:1; Micah 5:12).

In conclusion, the law is repeated, that the men were to appear before the Lord three times a year at the three feasts just mentioned (compare Exodus 23:17 with Exodus 23:14, and Exodus 34:23), with the additional clause, "at the place which the Lord shall choose," and the following explanation of the words "not empty:" "every man according to the gift of his hand, according to the blessing of Jehovah his God, which He hath given thee," i.e., with sacrificial gifts, as much as every one could offer, according to the blessing which he had received from God.
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