Q: #220. How many Pagan/false gods does the Bible mention?

By: Steve Shirley

    A: In my studies on this, I found 35 Pagan/false gods mentioned. It can be kind of confusing because some gods were the same but spelled differently in different places. Of the 35 I listed below, some may be the same as well, but I am pretty confident most are not. It is also interesting to note that most of the larger cities had numerous gods (polytheism). For example, the city of Athens had so many idols/gods (Acts 17:16), that they even made an idol "To The Unknown God" (Acts 17:23), just in case they missed any! (Paul used this opportunity to tell them about the one true God of all creation.) Below is my list:

Name Of Pagan/
False god
Worshipped By/InBible References (Total Verses)Description
AdrammelechSepharvites2 Kin 17:31 (1)Sun-god
AmonThebes In EgyptJer 46:25 (1)Sun-god
AnammelechSepharvites2 Kin 17:31 (1) Moon-goddess
Asherah (Asherim)CanaanJudg 6:25,26,28,30 (36) Fertility goddess
AshimaHammath In Syria2 Kin 17:30 (1) ------------------------------
Ashtoreth (Ashtaroth)Syria/Phoenicia/Canaan1 Kin 11:5,33 (9)Love, fertility goddess
BaalSyria/Phoenicia/Canaan2 Kin 10:18-23,25-28 (47) Principal god
Baal-berithShechem in CanaanJudg 8:33, Judg 9:4 (2) Name means "lord of covenant"
Baal-PeorMoabitesNum 25:3,5 (6) ------------------------------
Baal-Zebub (Beelzebub in NT Greek)Ekron In Philistine 2 Kin 1:2,3,6,16
(4 OT)(6 NT)
Name means "lord of flies" (protection from)
Bel (possibly same as Baal)Moabites/Babylonians/Ammonites Isa 46:1 Jer 50:2, Jer 51:44 (3)Principal god
Castor/Pollux (Twin Brothers)GreeksActs 28:11 (1) Twin sons of Zeus. Protection for sailors.
ChemoshMoabites1 Kin 11:7,33 (8)Destroyer, subduer. Child sacrifices made for
DagonPhilistines1 Sam 5:2-5,7 (7)Grain god
Diana/ArtemisEphesus In GreeceActs 19:24,27-28,34-35 (5)Moon, hunting, virginity goddess
Gad (Fortune)IsraelIsa 65:11 (1) ------------------------------
Golden CalfIsrael (Borrowed from Egypt)Story in Ex 32 ------------------------------
Jupiter/ZeusGreekActs 14:12 (1)King god, ruler of heaven and all other gods
Kalwan (Chiun)BabyloniansAmos 5:26 (1) Possibly star god
Meni (Destiny)IsraelIsa 65:11 (1) ------------------------------
Mercury/HermesGreekActs 14:12 (1)Messenger for the gods
Merodach/MardukBabyloniansJer 50:2 (1)Possibly associated with Mars, war god
Milcom (Malcham, Malcam)Ammonites1 Kin 11:5,33 (6) ------------------------------
Molech (Moloch)AmmonitesLev 20:2,3,4,5 (10) Destroyer, consumer. Child sacrifices made for
NeboChaldea In BabylonIsa 46:1 (1)Writing, speech, literature, arts god
NehushtanIsrael2 Kin 18:4 (1)Serpent Moses made in wilderness (Num 21:4-9)
NergalCuth in Babylon2 Kin 17:30 (1)War and hunting god
NibhazAvvites2 Kin 17:31 (1) ------------------------------
NisrochAssyrians2 Kin 19:37, Isa 37:38 (2) ------------------------------
Queen Of Heaven (Known as Ishtar)Assyria/BabylonJer 7:18, Jer 44:17,18,19,25 (5)Love, war, fertility goddess
RimmonSyria2 Kin 5:18 (1)Weather god
SikkuthBabyloniansAmos 5:26 (1)Saturn god
Succoth BenothBabylonians/Samarians2 Kin 17:30 (1) goddess
TammuzBabylonians/SamariansEzek 8:14 (1) Vegetation god
TartakAvvites2 Kin 17:31 (1)Prince of darkness

     In the previous question, Q: #219, we spoke on the 10 plagues of Egypt. Most scholars agree that each of the first 9 was specifically created by God to target a false Egyptian god, the powerlessness of that god to stop that plague, and the foolishness of believing that god actually had any power at all. (For example, the 2nd plague of frogs targeted the Egyptian frog god Heqt. The Egyptians worshipped frogs and no one was allowed to kill them.) None of these Egyptian gods are mentioned in the Bible by name, but we know from history and archaeology they existed. This is also the case with 100's of other Pagan/false gods from Bible times.

     In addition, there are numerous false gods from that time that are very well known today, and even taught about in schools. How many of you, like me, had to memorize the names of the Greek gods and what their "power" was i.e. Apollo, Ares, Athena, Hera, Hermes, Poseidon, Zeus, etc....?

     As Christians, we believe ONLY in the one true God of the Bible. Thankfully, we don't need numerous, man-made "gods" (who have no power at all) to guide our lives and live our lives for; just one God, who we will spend all eternity with one day when we place our trust in Jesus Christ.

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