The Molech MentalityRuth Jacob
The Valley of Hinnom (Gehenna) held terrible national memories for the Jewish people of what had taken place there during their early history in the land. This horror was one of the reasons, if not the reason that Gehenna was such an abomination to them.
This was the place where the terrible idol Molech had stood, the place where children were sacrificed to him. Molech the monster-god demanded that human beings be burnt alive to appease him - small children, who could have no choice in the matter. And no doubt his worshippers felt that as he was a god he had a right to do this.
For some centuries now, a malicious rumour has been spread about the real God, which says that He, too, has ordained that human beings be burnt alive. Those that teach this tell us that we should accept it without a murmur, because (they argue) God has every right to do this on account of being the biggest kid on the block. There is a big difference made, though, between the fiery torment suffered by the victims of Molech and that which God is said to inflict, and that is that the sufferings of those offered to Molech, however terrible, ended when they died of their injuries. The slander against God says that he will prolong the torments of his victims endlessly.
Some of those who argue in favour of eternal fiery torment say that they would calmly accept the fate of this "hell" for their parents, spouses, children, because, they say, it would be "the will of God".
Curiously, this is precisely the response that was required of the parents of those sacrificed to Molech. The parents stood before the idol and offered their small child, who was held in the vice-like grip of the idol. This device was then turned so that the baby or toddler was gradually carried into the fire. As their child screamed in agony in the flames, the parents were required to stand completely unmoved. This was a demand that they kill in themselves every ounce of "emotionalism". If the mother or father betrayed even the slightest feeling, the sacrifice would be unacceptable.
God called this practice an abomination in no uncertain terms1, and said that such a terrible thing had never entered his mind2. He warns us not to engage in double-think about this, as do those who say God is good, and God is love, yet also that he will commit this ghastly brutality:Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil;If we pattern our image of God after Molech, we are engaging in idolatry. If we worship such a being we are not worshipping the Father of Jesus Christ, who experiences the fall of every sparrow. If we bow down to this image we are bowing to the image of the beast - the nastiest, most vicious beast imaginable, the lowest manifestation of animal nature. This image is not the image of God; this is not Jesus.
Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness;
Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
Jesus came to set free the captives, he came to heal the brokenhearted, to liberate the people who were damaged. Jesus had compassion. Jesus wept. Jesus, not Molech, is the exact image of God. Jesus took upon himself the increasing harm, degradation and corruption that has been passed down the generations, Jesus took into himself people's diseases and let the goodness and life inside him flow out to others. I say again, Jesus is the exact image of God. Jesus did not mind being "emotional" ... this is the real image of God. And God is LOVE. Real love, not just a word to sound good: real love does everything it can for the benefit, especially the long-term benefit, of the one who is loved.
Gehenna had that evil history, but that is not its final destiny. Gehenna was once a place of torment - very much against God's wishes - and considered the worst place on earth, yet that whole area will be holy, we are told3.
Jesus's crucifixion within sight of that place of terrible memories is in direct contrast to the Molech mentality. Instead of God getting satisfaction by burning us or our children, he loved the world so much that he gave his own son Jesus for our benefit.
1 2 Kings 16:3, 2 Chronicles 33:6,
2 And they built the high places of Baal which are in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire to Molech, which I did not command them, nor did it come into My mind that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin. (Jeremiah 32:35)
3 Jeremiah 31:40