72 Bible Verses about Shrines
Most Relevant Verses
You will all know that I am Yahweh when their slain lie among their idols around their altars, on every high hill, on all the mountaintops, and under every green tree and every leafy oak—the places where they offered pleasing aromas to all their idols.
For long ago I broke your yoke;
I tore off your chains.
You insisted, “I will not serve!”
On every high hill
and under every green tree
you lie down like a prostitute.
When I brought them into the land that I swore to give them and they saw any high hill or leafy tree, they offered their sacrifices and presented their offensive offerings there. They also sent up their pleasing aromas and poured out their drink offerings there.
The woodworker stretches out a measuring line,
he outlines it with a stylus;
he shapes it with chisels
and outlines it with a compass.
He makes it according to a human likeness,
like a beautiful person,
to dwell in a temple.
They brought out the pillars of the temple of Baal and burned them and tore down the pillar of Baal. Then they tore down the temple of Baal and made it a latrine—which it is to this day.
But the people of each nation were still making their own gods in the cities where they lived and putting them in the shrines of the high places that the people of Samaria had made. The men of Babylon made 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 the Sepharvaim.
In the eighth year of his reign, while he was still a youth, Josiah began to seek the God of his ancestor David, and in the twelfth year he began to cleanse Judah and Jerusalem of the high places, the Asherah poles, the carved images, and the cast images. Then in his presence the altars of the Baals were torn down, and he chopped down the incense altars that were above them. He shattered the Asherah poles, the carved images, and the cast images, crushed them to dust, and scattered them over the graves of those who had sacrificed to them.
Then he did away with the idolatrous priests the kings of Judah had appointed to burn incense at the high places in the cities of Judah and in the areas surrounding Jerusalem. They had burned incense to Baal, and to the sun, moon, constellations, and the whole heavenly host.
He walked in all the ways of his father Asa; he did not turn away from them but did what was right in the Lord’s sight. However, the high places were not taken away; the people still sacrificed and burned incense on the high places.
He sacrificed and burned incense on the high places, on the hills, and under every green tree.
He asked the men of the place, “Where is the cult prostitute who was beside the road at Enaim?”“There has been no cult prostitute here,” they answered. So the Adullamite returned to Judah, saying, “I couldn’t find her, and furthermore, the men of the place said, ‘There has been no cult prostitute here.’”
Destroy completely all the places where the nations that you are driving out worship their gods—on the high mountains, on the hills, and under every green tree. Tear down their altars, smash their sacred pillars, burn up their Asherah poles, cut down the carved images of their gods, and wipe out their names from every place.
Instead, you must tear down their altars, smash their sacred pillars, and chop down their Asherah poles. You are never to bow down to another god because Yahweh, being jealous by nature, is a jealous God.
On that very night the Lord said to him, “Take your father’s young bull and a second bull seven years old. Then tear down the altar of Baal that belongs to your father and cut down the Asherah pole beside it.
Then Josiah brought all the priests from the cities of Judah, and he defiled the high places from Geba to Beer-sheba, where the priests had burned incense. He tore down the high places of the gates at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city (on the left at the city gate). The priests of the high places, however, did not come up to the altar of the Lord in Jerusalem; instead, they ate unleavened bread with their fellow priests. He defiled Topheth, which is in the Valley of Hinnom, so that no one could make his son or daughter pass through the fire to Molech.read more.
He did away with the horses that the kings of Judah had dedicated to the sun. They had been at the entrance of the Lord’s temple in the precincts by the chamber of Nathan-melech the court official, and he burned up the chariots of the sun. The king tore down the altars that were on the roof—Ahaz’s upper chamber that the kings of Judah had made—and the altars that Manasseh had made in the two courtyards of the Lord’s temple. Then he smashed them there and threw their dust into the Kidron Valley. The king also defiled the high places that were across from Jerusalem, to the south of the Mount of Destruction, which King Solomon of Israel had built for Ashtoreth, the detestable idol of the Sidonians; for Chemosh, the detestable idol of Moab; and for Milcom, the abomination of the Ammonites. He broke the sacred pillars into pieces, cut down the Asherah poles, then filled their places with human bones. He even tore down the altar at Bethel and the high place that Jeroboam son of Nebat, who caused Israel to sin, had made. Then he burned the high place, crushed it to dust, and burned the Asherah. As Josiah turned, he saw the tombs there on the mountain. He sent someone to take the bones out of the tombs, and he burned them on the altar. He defiled it according to the word of the Lord proclaimed by the man of God who proclaimed these things. Then he said, “What is this monument I see?”The men of the city told him, “It is the tomb of the man of God who came from Judah and proclaimed these things that you have done to the altar at Bethel.” So he said, “Let him rest. Don’t let anyone disturb his bones.” So they left his bones undisturbed with the bones of the prophet who came from Samaria. Josiah also removed all the shrines of the high places that were in the cities of Samaria, which the kings of Israel had made to provoke the Lord. Josiah did the same things to them that he had done at Bethel. He slaughtered on the altars all the priests of the high places who were there, and he burned human bones on the altars. Then he returned to Jerusalem.
When he finished offering the burnt offering, Jehu said to the guards and officers, “Go in and kill them. Don’t let anyone out.” So they struck them down with the sword. Then the guards and officers threw the bodies out and went into the inner room of the temple of Baal.
He removed the high places, shattered the sacred pillars, and cut down the Asherah poles. He broke into pieces the bronze snake that Moses made, for the Israelites burned incense to it up to that time. He called it Nehushtan.
However, the people were sacrificing on the high places, because until that time a temple for the Lord’s name had not been built. Solomon loved the Lord by walking in the statutes of his father David, but he also sacrificed and burned incense on the high places.
However, the people still sacrificed at the high places, but only to Yahweh their God.
“You must make an earthen altar for Me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and fellowship offerings, your sheep and goats, as well as your cattle. I will come to you and bless you in every place where I cause My name to be remembered.
When Gideon realized that He was the Angel of the Lord, he said, “Oh no, Lord God! I have seen the Angel of the Lord face to face!” But the Lord said to him, “Peace to you. Don’t be afraid, for you will not die.” So Gideon built an altar to the Lord there and called it Yahweh Shalom. It is in Ophrah of the Abiezrites until today.
The women answered, “Yes, he is ahead of you. Hurry, he just now came to the city, because there’s a sacrifice for the people at the high place today. If you go quickly, you can catch up with him before he goes to the high place to eat. The people won’t eat until he comes because he must bless the sacrifice; after that, the guests can eat. Go up immediately—you can find him now.” So they went up toward the city.Saul and his attendant were entering the city when they saw Samuel coming toward them on his way to the high place.
“After that you will come to the Hill of God where there are Philistine garrisons. When you arrive at the city, you will meet a group of prophets coming down from the high place prophesying. They will be preceded by harps, tambourines, flutes, and lyres.
From there he moved on to the hill country east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. He built an altar to Yahweh there, and he called on the name of Yahweh.
When they gathered at Mizpah, they drew water and poured it out in the Lord’s presence. They fasted that day, and there they confessed, “We have sinned against the Lord.” And Samuel judged the Israelites at Mizpah.
The king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there because it was the most famous high place. He offered 1,000 burnt offerings on that altar. At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream at night. God said, “Ask. What should I give you?”
David left Zadok the priest and his fellow priests before the tabernacle of the Lord at the high place in Gibeon to offer burnt offerings regularly, morning and evening, to the Lord on the altar of burnt offerings and to do everything that was written in the law of the Lord, which He had commanded Israel to keep.
So Solomon went to Jerusalem from the high place that was in Gibeon in front of the tent of meeting, and he reigned over Israel.
Suppose you say to me: We trust in the Lord our God. Isn’t He the One whose high places and altars Hezekiah has removed, saying to Judah and to Jerusalem: You must worship at this altar in Jerusalem?’
Don’t worship the Lord your God this way. Instead, you must turn to the place Yahweh your God chooses from all your tribes to put His name for His dwelling and go there. You are to bring there your burnt offerings and sacrifices, your tenths and personal contributions, your vow offerings and freewill offerings, and the firstborn of your herds and flocks. read more.
You will eat there in the presence of the Lord your God and rejoice with your household in everything you do, because the Lord your God has blessed you.
The Danites set up the carved image for themselves. Jonathan son of Gershom, son of Moses, and his sons were priests for the Danite tribe until the time of the exile from the land. So they set up for themselves Micah’s carved image that he had made, and it was there as long as the house of God was in Shiloh.
So the king sought advice.Then he made two golden calves, and he said to the people, “Going to Jerusalem is too difficult for you. Israel, here is your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt.” He set up one in Bethel, and put the other in Dan. This led to sin; the people walked in procession before one of the calves all the way to Dan.read more.
Jeroboam also built shrines on the high places and set up priests from every class of people who were not Levites.
They feared the Lord, but they also appointed from their number priests to serve them in the shrines of the high places. They feared the Lord, but they also worshiped their own gods according to the custom of the nations where they had been deported from.
Then the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and the priests of the second rank and the doorkeepers to bring out of the Lord’s temple all the articles made for Baal, Asherah, and the whole heavenly host. He burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron and carried their ashes to Bethel. Then he did away with the idolatrous priests the kings of Judah had appointed to burn incense at the high places in the cities of Judah and in the areas surrounding Jerusalem. They had burned incense to Baal, and to the sun, moon, constellations, and the whole heavenly host. He brought out the Asherah pole from the Lord’s temple to the Kidron Valley outside Jerusalem. He burned it at the Kidron Valley, beat it to dust, and threw its dust on the graves of the common people.read more.
He also tore down the houses of the male cult prostitutes that were in the Lord’s temple, in which the women were weaving tapestries for Asherah.
So He brought me to the entrance of the north gate of the Lord’s house, and I saw women sitting there weeping for Tammuz. And He said to me, “Do you see this, son of man? You will see even more detestable things than these.” So He brought me to the inner court of the Lord’s house, and there were about 25 men at the entrance of the Lord’s temple, between the portico and the altar, with their backs to the Lord’s temple and their faces turned to the east. They were bowing to the east in worship of the sun.
They also built for themselves high places, sacred pillars, and Asherah poles on every high hill and under every green tree; there were even male cult prostitutes in the land. They imitated all the detestable practices of the nations the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites.
Then He said to me, “Son of man, do you see what the elders of the house of Israel are doing in the darkness, each at the shrine of his idol? For they are saying, ‘The Lord does not see us. The Lord has abandoned the land.’”
At that time, Solomon built a high place for Chemosh, the detestable idol of Moab, and for Milcom, the detestable idol of the Ammonites, on the hill across from Jerusalem. He did the same for all his foreign wives, who were burning incense and offering sacrifices to their gods.
He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, imitating the detestable practices of the nations that the Lord had dispossessed before the Israelites. He rebuilt the high places that his father Hezekiah had destroyed and reestablished the altars for Baal. He made an Asherah, as King Ahab of Israel had done; he also worshiped the whole heavenly host and served them.
They have built high places to Baal on which to burn their children in the fire as burnt offerings to Baal, something I have never commanded or mentioned; I never entertained the thought.
They have built the high places of Baal in the Valley of Hinnom to make their sons and daughters pass through the fire to Molech—something I had not commanded them. I had never entertained the thought that they do this detestable act causing Judah to sin!
“you built yourself a mound and made yourself an elevated place in every square. You built your elevated place at the head of every street and turned your beauty into a detestable thing. You spread your legs to everyone who passed by and increased your prostitution.