Sun-worship

sun'-wur-ship: The splendor of the sun makes it a natural object of adoration, once the purer idea of the one true God (Ro 1:20-21) is parted with, and in most ancient nations the worship of the sun was an outstanding feature. It is found in Babylonian and Assyrian (Samas; special seats of sun-worship were Sippara and Larsa); in Egypt it is a leading feature of the religion (Ra, and, under special phases, Horus, Tum, Aten; a special seat of sun-worship was Heliopollis, the Old Testament On, called in Jer 43:13 Beth-shemesh, "house of the sun"). Other cities bore the same name: Beth-shemesh (Jos 15:10 = Ir-shemesh; Jos 19:41, in Judah; Jos 19:22, in Issachar; Jos 19:38, in Naphtali; see BETH-SHEMESH). Allusions to, and warnings against, sun-worship are frequent in the Old Testament, as in Le 26:30; 2Ch 14:5; 34:4,7; Isa 17:8; 27:9; Eze 6:4,6, in which passages for the King James Version "images," "idols," the Revised Version (British and American) has "sun-images" (which see); Job 31:26-27 and numerous passages show that this form of idolatry latterly penetrated deeply into Judah--even into its temple-worship (2Ki 23:5,11, "horses .... given to the sun" (see under HORSES OF THE SUN,

"Chariots of the Sun"); and Eze 8:16). Josiah's reformation took account of these abuses (2Ki 23:5,11 ff; 2Ch 34:4,7), and Ezekiel strenuously denounced them (2Ch 8:16 ff).

James Orr

 
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