A series of articles born out of critically thinking on the works of several Catholic Apologists and comparing their work with Scripture.
Images, statues, and the like
Exodus 20:4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
Exodus 20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
I understand the arguments for images "aiding" in devotion for some, but, based upon the above verses alone, Scriptures prohibits the employment or sanctioning any practice of using or making such images. With all of man's arguments against this prohibition, it is still a gray area at best.
A stumbling block?
According to the Scriptures, I am not to cast a stumbling block in front of my brother:
Romans 14:13 Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother's way.
Corinthians I 8:9 But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak.
If I am seen bowed down or kneeling in front of an image in prayer (even if I know my prayer is to God), it almost surely gives a non-Christian (my brother in Adam) a wrong impression that I am worshipping an idol. I would not want to take the chance of conveying that kind of message to anyone. It is not worth any small satisfaction I get by looking at a statue. Many believe that this could not happen, and if it does somehow happen, then the party that is misunderstanding should ask. This is not what the Scriptures teach. It is my responsibility. How can I know that everyone who ever sees me will "understand"? I can never be aware of everyone who has ever watched me... none of us knows for sure who is watching us at all times.
The Incorruptable made corruptable?
Any image of Jesus is an image of God. Jesus never ceased to be God. No one nowadays knows what Jesus looked like…so why try. Even if we did know what He looked like, any image we could make would be made from things of this Earth. If we could make an image of God, that image would most certainly be considered holy…at least to some degree. That image of the incorruptible God is made of corruptible material. The image will eventually fade or chip (like the arms on the statue picured) or wear away or be stepped on or be burned or have men abuse it or who knows what else. It would be better if the image were never made…just like God said in the Law of Moses. All this sounds way to close to what Paul wrote:
Romans 1:23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
The whole business of images of Jesus (God) is a spiritually dangerous practice which deserves very serious thought.