Ask Donnell: Asherah Poles In US Nightclubs?
We received the following question from Claudia;
"Donnell, Good morning. I am reading now the book of 1st and 2nd Kings, and reference is made to the putting up of asherah poles in Israel, in pagan worship. I did some research on what really is an asherah pole. I found out, but I also saw an article that says it is again becoming popular in clubs and other nightspots in America. Young people are rubbing them for good luck, and giving offerings to it. Will this new trend be because of a ‘lack of knowledge’, or is there a rise in atheist beliefs out of a denial of the existence of God? Have a good day."
Interesting question Claudia. This is the first time I'm hearing about this. I had no idea that Asherah poles still exist today. However, I'm not totally surprised. Many of these ancient religious practices exist in different forms today. Though the exact traditions may no longer be practiced in their original forms the spirits behind them are the same. With each generation these practices are repackaged and re-branded so that they remain relevant.
I did some research on the use of Asherah Poles in US nightclubs and came up with one article online which pretty much says the same thing you're saying. So I assume this is where you got your information also. From the looks of it, this is the only information available so it cannot be readily verified. Nonetheless, here's a sample of what they had to say;
SANTA MONICA — Out of fashion for 4,000 years, asherah poles have shown up in night clubs and hip restaurants in Los Angeles and Miami, where patrons consider them trendy, mystical symbols of ancient power.
“People want to connect to something with ancient roots, not some modern religion,” says a night club owner who added carved, modern-looking poles to his facility. “People rub them to get good luck with their careers and relationships.”........
As far as anyone can tell, the poles first showed up at a fashion show in West L.A., where the set designer used religious icons to spice things up. People raved about the sleek asherah poles so much that local clubs added them to their décor. Poles are often accompanied by a carved bowl at the base where people offer “sacrifices” of spare change, or even jewelry.
“It represents natural religion, I guess,” says Sasha, 23, who dropped a dollar into an asherah bowl before ordering a blue-colored beverage at the bustling Octopus Bar. “It makes me feel connected to the earth and to spiritual energy. Maybe it will help me be lucky.”
Even though these facts are subjective and we cannot confirm or deny how true they are, this lines up perfectly with the following scripture;
Romans 1:21-25(NLT) - Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles. So God abandoned them to do whatever shameful things their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things with each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.
When people don't want God they turn to foolishness. They rub the belly of Buddha. They rub magic lamps and hope genies come out. They wear good luck charms. They believe daily horoscopes and fortune cookies. They call psychic hotlines. They practice superstition. They drink blood and pretend to have vampire power. Maybe these things work just fine for them or maybe not. Regardless, instead of accepting the truth they open themselves up to the lies of the enemy.
What is Asherah and why does it matter?
1 Kings 15:13(NKJV) - Also he removed Maachah his grandmother from being queen mother, because she had made an obscene image of Asherah. And Asa cut down her obscene image and burned it by the Brook Kidron.
Asa didn't play any games with Asherah. He removed his grandmother from her throne because she was involved in the practice. He then proceeded to cut down the image she created and burn it to the ground. Why did he take it so seriously? What's the big deal with Asherah?
The Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology says the following;
Asherah. The people of Israel had been settled in the promised land for only a brief time before their attention turned to the deities of the Canaanites. The Book of Judges chronicles this apostasy. The people forsook the Lord God to serve Asherah and her husband Baal (Ashteroth is an alternative name for Asherah, Judges 2:13 ; 3:7 ).
The name "Asherah" and its variant spellings occur thirty-nine times in the Old Testament. In a number of these instances, Baal is mentioned along with Asherah. Evidence from Ugaritic mythologies and other texts suggests that the term refers to both the Canaanite goddess and cultic objects facilitating her worship.
That Baal and Asherah are mentioned together in several Old Testament passages suggests that the Canaanites and other peoples considered Asherah to be an important "high deity" along with Baal. The most explicit passage disclosing the close relationship between the two comes from the narrative about Ahab and Jezebel's confrontation with Elijah ( 1 Kings 18:1-19:18 ). Their endorsement of and participation in the worship of these Canaanite deities is the most extreme of any incidents related in Scripture concerning Israelite rulers who adopted the worship of these gods. In fact, Jezebel went so far as to insist that Ahab provide for the worship of her Phoenician deities.......
The most shocking endorsement of Israel's buying into Canaanite religion was the construction of a temple for the worship of Baal at Samaria. This, as mentioned above, was promoted by Ahab (869-850 b.c.) and Jezebel, his wife, who was the daughter of the Tyrian king Ethbaal ( 1 Kings 16:29-34 ). This temple was constructed with the help of Tyrian artisans, along with an altar on which to offer sacrifices and a "sacred pole" (NRSV) or "wooden image" (NKJV). Because of this apostasy, judgment was poured out on Ahab and Jezebel. Jehu later destroyed this temple ( 2 Kings 10:18-31 ).......
In sum, why would people choose to mess with Asherah poles again after all these years? I'm not sure. However, I put nothing beyond anyone who rejects God. If they don't want the truth they will believe a lie. What seems like harmless fun for some of these people could awaken spirits that will wreak complete havoc in their lives. Since we know the truth we should stay as far away from this stuff as possible.