'Goddess' in the Bible
When Judah saw her, he thought she was a [temple] prostitute, for she had covered her face [as such women did].
But you shall tear down and destroy their [pagan] altars, smash in pieces their [sacred] pillars (obelisks, images) and cut down their Asherim
But this is how you shall deal with them: you shall tear down their altars and smash to pieces their sacred pillars, and cut down their Asherim (symbols of the goddess Asherah), and burn their carved or sculpted images in the fire.
“You shall not plant for yourself an Asherah of any kind of tree or wood beside the altar of the Lord your God, which you shall make.
Now on that same night the Lord said to Gideon, “Take your father’s bull, the second bull seven years old, and tear down the altar of Baal that belongs to your father, and cut down the Asherah that is beside it;
For Solomon went after Ashtoreth, the [fertility] goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom the horror (detestable idol) of the Ammonites.
because they have abandoned Me and have worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the sons of Ammon; and they have not walked in My ways and followed My commandments, doing what is right in My sight and keeping My statutes and My ordinances as did his father David.
“The Lord will strike Israel, as a reed is shaken in the water; and He will uproot Israel from this good land which He gave to their fathers, and He will scatter them beyond the [Euphrates] River, because they have made their Asherim, provoking the Lord to anger.
For they also built for themselves high places [to worship idols] and sacred pillars and Asherim [for the goddess Asherah]. These were on every high hill and under every luxuriant tree.
He also deposed his [great-grand]mother Maacah from being queen mother, because she had made a horrid (obscene, vulgar) image for [the goddess] Asherah. Asa cut down her horrid image, and burned it by the Brook Kidron.
Ahab also made the Asherah. Ahab did more to provoke the Lord God of Israel than all the kings of Israel who were before him.
Now then, send word and gather to me all Israel at Mount Carmel, together with the 450 prophets of Baal and the 400 prophets of [the goddess] Asherah, who eat at [Queen] Jezebel’s table.”
Yet they did not turn from the [idolatrous] sins of the [royal] house of Jeroboam, who made Israel sin; but walked in them. And the Asherah [set up by Ahab] also remained standing in Samaria [Israel’s capital].
They set up for themselves sacred pillars (memorial stones) and Asherim on every high hill and under every green tree.
He made a carved image of the [goddess] Asherah and set it up in the house (temple), of which the Lord said to David and to his son Solomon, “In this house and in Jerusalem [in the tribe of Judah], which I have chosen from all the tribes of Israel, I will put My Name forever.
Then the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest and the priests of the second rank and the doorkeepers to bring out of the temple of the Lord all the articles made for Baal, for [the goddess] Asherah, and for all the [starry] host of heaven; and he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel [where Israel’s idolatry began].
The king desecrated the high places which were opposite [east of] Jerusalem, which were on the right (south) of the mount of corruption which Solomon the king of Israel had built for Ashtoreth the repulsiveness of the Sidonians, for Chemosh the repulsiveness of Moab, and for Milcom the repulsiveness of the sons (descendants) of Ammon.
He removed the foreign altars and high places and tore down the [pagan] pillars (obelisks, memorial stones), and cut to pieces the Asherim [the symbols of the goddess Asherah].
He also removed Maacah, King Asa’s mother, from the position of queen mother, because she had made a repulsive image for [the goddess] Asherah. Asa cut down her idol, crushed it, and burned it at the Brook Kidron.
And he will not have regard for the [idolatrous] altars, the work of his hands,Nor will he look to that which his fingers have made,Neither the Asherim (symbols of the goddess Asherah) nor the incense altars.
As they remember their children,So they remember [in detail] their [pagan] altars and their AsherimBeside green trees on the high hills.
I will not punish your daughters when they play the prostituteOr your brides when they commit adultery,For the men themselves slip away with prostitutes,And they offer sacrifices with temple prostitutes [who give their bodies in honor of the idol].So the people without understanding [stumble and fall and] come to ruin.
“I will root out your Asherim (symbols of the goddess Asherah) from among youAnd destroy your cities [which are the centers of pagan worship].
Now a man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of [the goddess] Artemis (Diana), was bringing no small profit to the craftsmen.
Not only is there danger that this trade of ours will be discredited, but also that the [magnificent] temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited, and that she whom all Asia and the world worship will even be dethroned and lose her glorious magnificence.”
For you have brought these men here who are neither temple robbers nor blasphemers of our goddess.
When the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand, they began saying to one another, “Undoubtedly this man is a murderer, and though he has been saved from the sea, Justice [the avenging goddess] has not permitted him to live.”