Deuteronomy 12:2

Hebrew Bible

1 These are the statutes and ordinances you must be careful to obey as long as you live in the land the Lord, the God of your ancestors, has given you to possess. 2 You must by all means destroy all the places where the nations you are about to dispossess worship their gods—on the high mountains and hills and under every leafy tree. 3 You must tear down their altars, shatter their sacred pillars, burn up their sacred Asherah poles, and cut down the images of their gods; you must eliminate their very memory from that place. 4 You must not worship the Lord your God the way they worship.

Jeremiah 2:20

Hebrew Bible

18 What good will it do you then to go down to Egypt to seek help from the Egyptians? What good will it do you to go over to Assyria to seek help from the Assyrians? 19 Your own wickedness will bring about your punishment. Your unfaithful acts will bring down discipline on you. Know, then, and realize how utterly harmful it was for you to reject me, the Lord your God, to show no respect for me,” says the Sovereign Lord of Heaven’s Armies. 20 “Indeed, long ago you threw off my authority and refused to be subject to me. You said, ‘I will not serve you.’ Instead, you gave yourself to other gods on every high hill and under every green tree, like a prostitute sprawls out before her lovers. 21 I planted you in the land like a special vine of the very best stock. Why in the world have you turned into something like a wild vine that produces rotten, foul-smelling grapes? 22 You can try to wash away your guilt with a strong detergent. You can use as much soap as you want. But the stain of your guilt is still there for me to see,” says the Sovereign Lord.

 Notes and References

"... When the people came to the sanctuary to remember (also a strong covenant word: Deuteronomy 8:18; Numbers 15:39; Exodus 20:8), their remembrance (“observance” or “commemoration”) was not of their covenant with Yahweh; instead they worshiped their altars and Asherahs, together with their green trees and high places, all indicative of syncretistic Baal worship (Deuteronomy 12:2; Jeremiah 2:20; 3:6, 13). The last phrase of the indictment, the first two words of verse 3, returns to the first person. These trees or groves, high hills, and high places of Baal worship all belong not to Baal but to Yahweh! As so commonly occurs in Hosea, Jeremiah appropriates the marriage and fertility images to describe Yahweh and his covenant relationship with his people. Furthermore, this phrase contrasts again the syncretistic worship with that which should be given Yahweh on his “holy hill” ..."

Craigie, Peter C. Word Biblical Commentary: Jeremiah 1-25 (pp. 487-488) Zondervan, 2018

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