72 Bible Verses about Shrines
Most Relevant Verses
Then shall you know, understand, and realize that I am the Lord, when their slain shall lie among their idols round about their altars upon every high hill, on all the tops of the mountains, under every green tree, and under every thickly leafed oak, the places where they were accustomed to offer sweet incense to all their idols.
For you will be ashamed [of the folly and degradation] of the oak or terebinth trees in which you found [idolatrous] pleasure, and you will blush with shame for the [idolatrous worship which you practice in the passion-inflaming] gardens which you have chosen.
For long ago [in Egypt] I broke your yoke and burst your bonds [not that you might be free, but that you might serve Me] and long ago you shattered the yoke and snapped the bonds [of My law which I put upon you]; you said, I will not serve and obey You! For upon every high hill and under every green tree you [eagerly] prostrated yourself [in idolatrous worship], playing the harlot.
For when I had brought them into the land which I lifted up My hand and swore to give to them, then they saw every high hill and every dark and leafy tree [as a place for idol worship], and they offered there their sacrifices and there they presented their offering that provoked My anger and sadness; there also they made their sweet-smelling savor and poured out there their drink offerings.
The carpenter stretches out a line, he marks it out with a pencil or red ocher; he fashions [an idol] with planes and marks it out with the compasses; and he shapes it to have the figure of a man, with the beauty of a man, that it may dwell in a house.
They brought out the pillars or obelisks of the house of Baal and burned them. They broke down the pillars of Baal and the house of Baal, and made it [forever unclean] a privy to this day.
But every nationality still made gods of their own and put them in the shrines of the high places which the Samaritans had made, every nationality in the city in which they dwelt. The men of Babylon made [and worshiped their deity] Succoth-benoth, the men of Cuth made Nergal, the men of Hamath made Ashima, The Avvites made Nibhaz and Tartak, and the Sepharvites burned their children in the fire to Adrammelech and Anammelech, the gods of Sepharvaim.
For in the eighth year of his reign, while he was yet young [sixteen], he began to seek after and yearn for the God of David his father [forefather]; and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the Asherim, and the carved and molten images. They broke down the altars of the Baals in his presence; the sun-images that were high above them he hewed down; the Asherim and the graven images and the molten images he broke in pieces and made dust of them and strewed it upon the graves of those who sacrificed to them.
He put away the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in Judah's cities and round about Jerusalem -- "also those who burned incense to Baal, to the sun, to the moon, to the constellations [or twelve signs of the zodiac], and to all the hosts of the heavens.
He walked in all the ways or customs of Asa his father, never swerving from it, doing right in the sight of the Lord. However, the [idolatrous] high places were not taken away; for the people still sacrificed and burned incense in the high places.
He sacrificed also and burnt incense in the high places, on the hills, and under every green tree.
He asked the men of that place, Where is the harlot or cult prostitute who was openly by the roadside? They said, There was no harlot or temple prostitute here. So he returned to Judah and said, I cannot find her; and also the local men said, There was no harlot or temple prostitute around here.
You shall surely destroy all the places where the nations you dispossess served their gods, upon the high mountains and the hills and under every green tree. You shall break down their altars and dash in pieces their pillars and burn their Asherim with fire; you shall hew down the graven images of their gods and destroy their name out of that place.
But you shall destroy their altars, dash in pieces their pillars (obelisks, images), and cut down their Asherim [symbols of the goddess Asherah]; For you shall worship no other god; for the Lord, Whose name is Jealous, is a jealous (impassioned) God,
But thus shall you deal with them: you shall break down their altars and dash in pieces their pillars and hew down their Asherim [symbols of the goddess Asherah] and burn their graven images with fire.
That night the Lord said to Gideon, Take your father's bull, the second bull seven years old, and pull down the altar of Baal that your father has and cut down the Asherah [symbol of the goddess Asherah] that is beside it;
And [Josiah] brought all the [idolatrous] priests out of the city of Judah and defiled the high places, where the priests had burned incense, from Geba to Beersheba [north to south], and broke down the high places both at the entrance of the Gate of Joshua the governor of the city and that which was on one's left at the city's gate. However, the priests of the high places were not allowed to sacrifice upon the Lord's altar in Jerusalem, but they ate unleavened bread among their brethren. And Josiah defiled Topheth, which is in the Valley of Ben-hinnom [son of Hinnom], that no man might ever burn there his son or his daughter as an offering to Molech.read more.
And he removed the horses that the kings of Judah had devoted to the sun from the entrance of the house of the Lord, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the chamberlain, which was in the area, and he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. And the altars on the roof of the upper chamber of Ahaz, which the kings of Judah had made, and the altars which Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the Lord, [Josiah] pulled down and beat them in pieces, and he [ran and] cast their dust into the brook Kidron. And the king defiled the high places east of Jerusalem, south of the Mount of Corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had built for Ashtoreth the abominable [goddess] of the Sidonians, for Chemosh the abominable god of the Moabites, and for Milcom the abominable [god] of the Ammonites. He broke in pieces the pillars (images) and cut down the Asherim and replaced them with the bones of men [to defile the places forever]. Moreover, the altar at Bethel, the high place made by Jeroboam son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, that altar with the high place Josiah tore down and broke in pieces its stones, beating them to dust, and burned the Asherah. And as Josiah turned, he saw the tombs across on the mount, and he sent and brought the bones out of the tombs and burned them upon the altar and defiled it, in fulfillment of the word of the Lord which the man of God prophesied, who predicted these things [about this altar, naming Josiah before he was born]. Josiah said, What is that monument I see? The men of the city told him, It is the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and foretold these things that you have just done against the altar of Bethel. He said, Let him alone; let no man move his bones. So they let his bones alone, with the bones of the prophet that came out of Samaria. Also Josiah took away all the houses of the high places in the cities of Samaria which the kings of Israel had made, provoking the Lord to anger, and he did to them all that he had done in Bethel. He slew all the priests of the high places that were there upon the altars and burned men's bones upon them [to defile the places forever]. Then he returned to Jerusalem.
As soon as he had finished offering the burnt offering, Jehu said to the guards and to the officers, Go in and slay them; let none escape. And they smote them with the sword; and the guards or runners [before the king] and the officers threw their bodies out and went into the inner dwelling of the house of Baal.
He removed the high places, broke the images, cut down the Asherim, and broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until then the Israelites had burned incense to it; but he called it Nehushtan [a bronze trifle].
But the people sacrificed [to God] in the high places [as the heathen did to their idols], for there was no house yet built to the Name of the Lord. Solomon loved the Lord, walking [at first] in the statutes and practices of David his father, only he sacrificed and burned incense in the high places.
Yet the people still sacrificed in the high places, but only to the Lord their God.
An altar of earth you shall make to Me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and your peace offerings, your sheep and your oxen. In every place where I record My name and cause it to be remembered I will come to you and bless you.
And when Gideon perceived that He was the Angel of the Lord, Gideon said, Alas, O Lord God! For now I have seen the Angel of the Lord face to face! The Lord said to him, Peace be to you, do not fear; you shall not die. Then Gideon built an altar there to the Lord and called it, The Lord is Peace. To this day it still stands in Ophrah, which belongs to the Abiezrites.
They answered, He is; behold, he is just beyond you. Hurry, for he came today to the city because the people have a sacrifice today on the high place. As you enter the city, you will find him before he goes up to the high place to eat. The people will not eat until he comes to ask the blessing on the sacrifice. Afterward, those who are invited eat. So go on up, for about now you will find him. So they went up to the city, and as they were entering, behold, Samuel came toward them, going up to the high place.
After that you will come to the hill of God, where the garrison of the Philistines is; and when you come to the city, you will meet a company of prophets coming down from the high place with harp, tambourine, flute, and lyre before them, prophesying.
From there he pulled up [his tent pegs] and departed to the mountain on the east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east; and there he built an altar to the Lord and called upon the name of the Lord.
So they gathered at Mizpah and drew water and poured it out before the Lord and fasted on that day and said there, We have sinned against the Lord. And Samuel judged the Israelites at Mizpah.
The king went to Gibeon [near Jerusalem, where stood the tabernacle and the bronze altar] to sacrifice there, for that was the great high place. One thousand burnt offerings Solomon offered on that altar. In Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night. And God said, Ask what I shall give you.
And David left Zadok the priest and his brethren the priests before the tabernacle of the Lord in the high place that was at Gibeon To offer burnt offerings to the Lord upon the altar of burnt offering continually, morning and evening, and to do all that is written in the Law of the Lord which He commanded Israel.
Then Solomon came from the high place at Gibeon, from before the Tent of Meeting, to Jerusalem. And he reigned over Israel.
But if you tell me, We trust in and rely on the Lord our God, is it not He Whose high places and altars Hezekiah has removed, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, You shall worship before this altar in Jerusalem?
You shall not behave so toward the Lord your God. But you shall seek the place which the Lord your God shall choose out of all your tribes to put His Name and make His dwelling place, and there shall you come; And there you shall bring your burnt offerings and your sacrifices, your tithes and the offering of your hands, and your vows and your freewill offerings, and the firstlings of your herd and of your flock.read more.
And there you shall eat before the Lord your God, and you shall rejoice in all to which you put your hand, you and your households, in which the Lord your God has blessed you.
And the Danites set up the graven image for themselves; and Jonathan son of Gershom, the son of Moses, and his sons were priests to the tribe of Dan until the day of the captivity of the land. So they set them up Micah's graven image which he made, as long as the house of God was at Shiloh.
So the king took counsel and made two calves of gold. And he said to the people, It is too much for you to go [all the way] up to Jerusalem. Behold your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. And he set the one golden calf in Bethel, and the other he put in Dan. And this thing became a sin; for the people went to worship each of them even as far as Dan.read more.
Jeroboam also made houses on high places and made priests of people who were not Levites.
So they feared the Lord, yet appointed from among themselves, whether high or low, priests of the high places, who sacrificed for them in the shrines of the high places. They feared the Lord, yet served their own gods, as did the nations from among whom they had been carried away.
Come to Bethel [where the golden calf is] and transgress; at Gilgal [another idol worship center] multiply transgression; and bring your sacrifices every morning and your tithes every three days.
And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and the priests of the second rank and the keepers of the threshold to bring out of the temple of the Lord all the vessels made for Baal, for [the goddess] Asherah, and for all the hosts of the heavens; and he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel [where Israel's idolatry began]. He put away the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in Judah's cities and round about Jerusalem -- "also those who burned incense to Baal, to the sun, to the moon, to the constellations [or twelve signs of the zodiac], and to all the hosts of the heavens. And Josiah brought the Asherah from the house of the Lord to outside Jerusalem to the brook Kidron and burned it there, and beat it to dust and cast its dust upon the graves of the common people [who had sacrificed to it].read more.
And he broke down the houses of the male cult prostitutes, which were by the house of the Lord, where the women wove [tent] hangings for the Asherah [shrines].
Then He brought me to the entrance of the north gate of the Lord's house; and behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz [a Babylonian god, who was supposed to die annually and subsequently be resurrected]. Then said [the Spirit] to me, Have you seen this, O son of man? Yet again you shall see greater abominations that they are committing. And He brought me to the inner court of the Lord's house; and behold, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the bronze altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs to the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east, and they were bowing themselves toward the east and worshiping the sun.
For they also built themselves [idolatrous] high places, pillars, and Asherim [idolatrous symbols of the goddess Asherah] on every high hill and under every green tree. There were also sodomites (male cult prostitutes) in the land. They did all the abominations of the nations whom the Lord cast out before the Israelites.
Then said He to me, Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in his [secret] chambers of [idol] pictures? For they say, The Lord does not see us; the Lord has forsaken the land.
Then Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abominable idol of Moab, on the hill opposite Jerusalem, and for Molech the abominable idol of the Ammonites. And he did so for all of his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods.
He [Hezekiah's son] did evil in the sight of the Lord, after the [idolatrous] practices of the [heathen] nations whom the Lord cast out before the Israelites. For he built up again the high places which Hezekiah his father had destroyed; and he reared up altars for Baal and made an Asherah, as did Ahab king of Israel, and worshiped all the [starry] hosts of the heavens and served them!
And they have built the high places of Topheth, which is in the Valley of Ben-hinnom [son of Hinnom], to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire [in honor of Molech, the fire god] -- "which I did not command, nor did it come into My mind or heart.
And they built the high places [for worship] of Baal in the Valley of Ben-hinnom [son of Hinnom] to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire [in worship also of and] to Molech -- "which I did not command them, nor did it come into My mind or heart that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.
[No] but [instead of bringing Me the appointed sacrifices] you carried about the tent of your king Sakkuth and Kaiwan [names for the gods of the planet Saturn], your images of your star-god which you made for yourselves [and you will do so again].
[No!] You took up the tent (the portable temple) of Moloch and carried it [with you], and the star of the god Rephan, the images which you [yourselves] made that you might worship them; and I will remove you [carrying you away into exile] beyond Babylon.
You have built also for yourself a vaulted chamber (brothel) and have made a high place [of idol worship] in every street. At every crossway you built your high place [for idol worship] and have made your beauty an abomination [abhorrent, loathsome, extremely disgusting, and detestable]; and you have made your body available to every passerby and multiplied your [idolatry and spiritual] harlotry.