Is bowing down to anything but God idolatry?


#1

Is there anywhere in the Bible where God permits man to bow down to another man, in a sign of respect? For some reason, I remember reading it somewhere but can’t seem to find it now when I need it! I think it was about someone in the O.T., with the Lord by their side, bowing down to a king or something, but I’m not sure, that may be waaaay off. A friend on MySpace wrote this in her blog:

"Exodus 23:24 CEV You must not bow down to their gods or worship them.

What does every catholic do when they meet the pope; they bow down and kiss his ring. We are to bow down to no one other than the Lord God. For the Lord God is a jealous God and we are to worship and bow down to none other than Him."

Thanks for your help! :thumbsup:


#2

[quote=JSmitty2005]Is there anywhere in the Bible where God permits man to bow down to another man, in a sign of respect? For some reason, I remember reading it somewhere but can’t seem to find it now when I need it! I think it was about someone in the O.T., with the Lord by their side, bowing down to a king or something, but I’m not sure, that may be waaaay off. A friend on MySpace wrote this in her blog:

"Exodus 23:24 CEV You must not bow down to their gods or worship them.

What does every catholic do when they meet the pope; they bow down and kiss his ring. We are to bow down to no one other than the Lord God. For the Lord God is a jealous God and we are to worship and bow down to none other than Him."

Thanks for your help! :thumbsup:
[/quote]

In other cultures, respect has been shown to others by kneeling or bowing. In Japan, for example, individuals often bow down to their elders as a sign of honor. In Victorian England, little girls were taught to curtsy. When a man proposes to his future wife he often gets down on one knee to show his love for her. Are all these individuals worshipping other humans as they would God?

Catholics do not bow down to other gods or worship them. We do not see the pope as a god, nor are we worshipping him. Instead we are paying respect. Therefore we are doing nothing wrong.


#3

We bow to show our love and respect to the Holy Father our vicar on earth and some may nod their heads to priests.


#4

Here are a few selections from the Old Testament of people bowing before other people out of respect:

In 1 Kings 1:23, the prophet Nathan bowed before King David, with his face to the ground.
And they told the king [David], “Here is Nathan the prophet.” And when he came in before the king, he bowed before the king, with his face to the ground. (1 Kings 1:23)

In 1 Kings 2:19, King Solomon rose from his throne to meet his mother, Bathsheba, and bowed down to her.

So Bathsheba went to King Solomon, to speak to him on behalf of Adonijah. And the king rose to meet her, and bowed down to her; then he sat on his throne, and had a seat brought for the king’s mother; and she sat on his right. (1 Kings 2:19)

In 2 Kings 2:15, the sons of the prophets at Jericho bowed before the prophet Elisha.

Now when the sons of the prophets who were at Jericho saw him [Elisha] over against them, they said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” And they came to meet him, and bowed to the ground before him. (2 Kings 2:15)

In 1 Sam 24:8, David bowed with his face to the earth and did obeisance to King Saul.

Afterward David also arose, and went out of the cave, and called after Saul, “My lord the king!” And when Saul looked behind him, David bowed with his face to the earth, and did obeisance. (1 Sam 24:8)

In 1 Kings 1:16 & 31, Bathsheba bowed and did obeisance to King David.

Bathsheba bowed and did obeisance to the king, and the king said, “What do you desire?” (1 Kings 1:16)

Then Bathshe’ba bowed with her face to the ground, and did obeisance to the king, and said, “May my lord King David live for ever!” (1 Kings 1:31)

In 1 Chron 21:21, Ornan did obeisance to King David with his face to the ground.

As David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David and went forth from the threshing floor, and did obeisance to David with his face to the ground. (1 Chron 21:21)


#5

[quote=Todd Easton]Here are a few selections from the Old Testament of people bowing before other people out of respect:

In 1 Kings 1:23, the prophet Nathan bowed before King David, with his face to the ground.
And they told the king [David], “Here is Nathan the prophet.” And when he came in before the king, he bowed before the king, with his face to the ground. (1 Kings 1:23)

In 1 Kings 2:19, King Solomon rose from his throne to meet his mother, Bathsheba, and bowed down to her.

So Bathsheba went to King Solomon, to speak to him on behalf of Adonijah. And the king rose to meet her, and bowed down to her; then he sat on his throne, and had a seat brought for the king’s mother; and she sat on his right. (1 Kings 2:19)

In 2 Kings 2:15, the sons of the prophets at Jericho bowed before the prophet Elisha.

Now when the sons of the prophets who were at Jericho saw him [Elisha] over against them, they said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” And they came to meet him, and bowed to the ground before him. (2 Kings 2:15)

In 1 Sam 24:8, David bowed with his face to the earth and did obeisance to King Saul.

Afterward David also arose, and went out of the cave, and called after Saul, “My lord the king!” And when Saul looked behind him, David bowed with his face to the earth, and did obeisance. (1 Sam 24:8)

In 1 Kings 1:16 & 31, Bathsheba bowed and did obeisance to King David.

Bathsheba bowed and did obeisance to the king, and the king said, “What do you desire?” (1 Kings 1:16)

Then Bathshe’ba bowed with her face to the ground, and did obeisance to the king, and said, “May my lord King David live for ever!” (1 Kings 1:31)

In 1 Chron 21:21, Ornan did obeisance to King David with his face to the ground.

As David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David and went forth from the threshing floor, and did obeisance to David with his face to the ground. (1 Chron 21:21)

[/quote]

Wow! heres a man that knows his scriptures, JSmitty 2005 your not going to find a better answer than that! :thumbsup:


#6

[quote=levi86]Wow! heres a man that knows his scriptures, JSmitty 2005 your not going to find a better answer than that! :thumbsup:
[/quote]

Nope, I don’t think I will. Thanks A LOT Todd!!! :thumbsup:


#7

One more thing, though, are there any examples in the New Testament?


#8

Check this out. THREAD
Pax tecum,


#9

[quote=Church Militant]Check this out. THREAD
Pax tecum,
[/quote]

Thanks, will do.


#10

2 Chronicles 24:17
The Wickedness of Joash ] After the death of Jehoiada, the officials of Judah came and paid homage to the king, and he listened to them.

Job 31:27
so that my heart was secretly enticed and my hand offered them a kiss of homage,

Mark 15:19
Again and again they struck him on the head with a staff and spit on him. Falling on their knees, they paid homage to him.

Refused by Peter (Acts 10:26)
Paul and Barnabas (Acts 14:11-18)
By the angel seen by John in his vision (Revelations 19:10;22:8,9)
See WORSHIP
Rendered to kings (1 Kings 1:16,23,31)
Princes (Esther 3:2,5)


#11

[quote=JSmitty2005]One more thing, though, are there any examples in the New Testament?
[/quote]

Just as in the Old Testament there is “bowing” and acts of “worship” (veneration/honoring) which are performed without violating the Command to “Worhip (adore) God Alone” - so too in the New Testament there is made the same distinction bewteen “worship” - which is giving honor but not adoration - and “worship” which is the giving of adoration due to God alone.

From Luke 14:!0 King James Version

But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee.

The New International Version translates “worship” correctly in this circumstance as giving "honor’.

From the Blue Letter Bible we find that the greek being translated is Strong’s Word #1391 - “doxa” which may refer to the glory of God but also to the lesser glory due to others:

doxa

  1. opinion, judgment, view
  1. opinion, estimate, whether good or bad concerning someone
    a) in the NT always a good opinion concerning one, resulting
    in praise, honour, and glory
  1. splendour, brightness
    a) of the moon, sun, stars
    b) magnificence, excellence, preeminence, dignity, grace
    c) majesty
  1. a thing belonging to God
    a) the kingly majesty which belongs to him as supreme ruler, majesty in the sense of the absolute perfection of the deity
  1. a thing belonging to Christ

a) the kingly majesty of the Messiah
b) the absolutely perfect inward or personal excellency of Christ; the majesty

  1. of the angels
    a) as apparent in their exterior brightness
  1. a most glorious condition, most exalted state

a) of that condition with God the Father in heaven to which Christ was raised after he had achieved his work on earth
b) the glorious condition of blessedness into which is appointed and promised that true Christians shall enter after their Saviour’s return from heaven

Blue Letter Bible

In the Parable of the Unmerciful Servant, Jesus relates how the servant “worshipped” an earthly king to whom the servant owed a great debt:

The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all. (Matt 18:26)

The word translated “worshipped” is Strong’s Word # 4352 - proskuneo which means:

  1. to kiss the hand to (towards) one, in token of reverence
  1. among the Orientals, esp. the Persians, to fall upon the knees and touch the ground with the forehead as an expression of profound reverence
  1. in the NT by kneeling or prostration to do homage (to one) or make obeisance, whether in order to express respect or to make supplication

a) used of homage shown to men and beings of superior rank

  1. to the Jewish high priests
  2. to God
  3. to Christ
  4. to heavenly beings
  5. to demons

In Revelation Chapter 3, Jesus affirms that those “who claim to be Jews but who are not” will be made to “come and fall down” (translated “worship” in the King James Version) at the feet of those Christians who have not denied Christ:

Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

The NIV reads:

I will make those who are of the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars—I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you.

Hope this helps

Keep the Faith
jmt


#12

Peace be with you!

The only way that bowing down to someone or something would be a violation of the first commandment is if the purpose of the bowing was to worship something other than God. Take the veneration of the cross, for example, that we don on Good Friday. We are not bowing to the cross of kissing it to worship it. We are bowing before it or kissing it to show our respect for what it represents, not for the piece of wood itself. And we certainly don’t feel that we are worshipping it.

In Christ,
Rand


#13

Gosh, I hope none of those people square dance. . .you know, “Bow to your partner”, and (even worse) “Bow to your CORNER”. . . :smiley:


#14

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