Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth…
Here is a forcible address to every image-worshipper, and, indeed, every image-possessor: "Put away these gods from you." What have any who own the Bible for their guide to do with these vain and worthless toys of sin, these devices of Satan, and degrading productions of ignorance, the very perversions of reason, as well as the corruptions of revelation? They are everywhere the contempt and derision of inspired truth. To make them is directly prohibited, and to destroy them explicitly commanded, so that it may be matter of wonder how any can plead for their use, under any plausibility or pretence, as remembrancers only of spiritual and hidden realities. If in the Church of the Old Testament the very mention of idols, or the keeping any representations of them, became so offensive in the Divine eye, what shall be said of any rivalship in the heart in services and worship offered to saints or angels? Supplications and sacrifices, offered even to holy intelligences, must be idolatry in its spirit, equally offensive to God and opposed to His Word as the most degrading rites of the heathen. Oh, what false gods, what spiritual imagery is formed within the chambers of the heart! Who does not need to put them away, and to cleanse himself from the filthiness of flesh and spirit! How easily does carnal affection change the best of things into the worst l There is nothing but, through the corruption of imagination or sinfulness of affection, may become an idol of the heart. Whatever denies to God supremacy of love, and occupies the regards to be paid to spiritual and eternal realities, that is an idol to be put away; and happy are such who can say, "What have I to do any more with idols?" Choice enters into the very nature of true and sincere religion, so that none serve the Lord cheerfully, acceptably, and with profit, whose heart is not itself a willing offering.
Parallel VersesKJV: Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD.