Confounded be all they that serve graven images, that boast themselves of idols: worship him, all you gods.
All Commentaries on Psalms 97:7 Go To Psalms 97
Augustine of Hippo
9. "Confounded be all they that worship carved images" (ver. 7). Hath not this come to pass? Have they not been confounded? Are they not daily confounded? For carved images are images wrought by the hand. Why are all who worship carved images confounded? Because all people have seen His glory. All nations now confess the glory of Christ: let those who worship stones be ashamed. Because those stones were dead, we have found a living Stone; indeed those stones never lived, so that they cannot be called even dead; but our Stone is living, and hath ever lived with the Father, and though He died for us, He revived, and liveth now, and death shall no more have dominion over Him. This glory of His the nations have acknowledged; they leave the temples, they run to the Churches. Do they still seek to worship carved images? Have they not chosen to forsake their idols? They have been forsaken by their idols. "Who glory in their idols." But there is a certain disputer who seemeth unto himself learned, and saith, I do not worship that stone, nor that image which is without sense; ...I worship not this image but I adore what I see, and servehim whom see not. Who is that? Some invisible deity, he replieth, who presideth over that image. By giving this account of their images, they seem to themselves able disputants, because they do not worship idols, and yet do worship devils. "The things," brethren, saith the Apostle, "which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice unto devils, and not to God; we know that an idol is nothing: and that what the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God; and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils." Let them not therefore excuse themselves on this ground, that they are not devoted to insensate idols; they are rather devoted to devils, which is more dangerous. For if they were only worshipping idols, as they would not help them, so they would not hurt them; but if thou worship and serve devils, they themselves will be thy masters. ...
10. But observe holy men, who are like the Angels. When thou hast found some holy man who serveth God, if thou wish to worship him instead of God, he forbiddeth thee: he will not arrogate to himself the honour due to God, he will not be unto thee as God, but be with thee under God. Thus did the holy Apostles Paul and Barnabas. They preached the word of God in Lycaonia. When they had performed wonderful works in Lycaonia, the people of that country brought victims, and wished to sacrifice to them, calling Barnabas Jupiter, and Paul Mercury: they were not pleased. Did they perchance refuse to be sacrificed to, because they abhorred to be compared to devils? No, but because they shuddered at divine honour being paid to men. Their own words show this: it is no guess of ours; for the text of the book goeth on to say how they were moved. ...Just then, as good men forbade those who had wished to worship them as gods, and wish rather that God alone be worshipped, God alone be adored, to God alone sacrifice be offered, not to themselves; so also all the holy Angels seek His glory whom they love; endeavour to impel and to excite to the contemplation of Him all whom they love: Him they declare to them, not themselves, since they are angels; and because they are soldiers, they study only how to seek the glory of their Captain; but if they have sought their own glory, they are condemned as usurpers. Such were the devil and his angels; he claimed for himself divine honour, and for all his demons; he filled the Pagan temples, and persuaded them to offer images and sacrifices to himself. Was it not better to worship holy Angels than devils? They answer: we do not worship devils; we worship angels, as ye call them, the powers and the ministers of the great God. I wish ye would worship them: ye would easily learn from themselves not to worship them. Hear an Angel teaching. He was teaching a disciple of Christ, and showing him many wonders in the Revelation of John: and when some wonderful vision had been shown him, he trembled, and fell down at the Angel's feet; but that Angel, who sought not but the glory of God, said, "See thou do it not; for I am a fellow-servant of thee, and of thy brethren the prophets." What then, my brethren? Let no man say, I fear lest the Angel may be angry with me, if I worship him not as my God. He is then angry with thee, when thou hast chosen to worship him: for he is righteous, and loveth God. As devils are angry if they are not worshipped, so are Angels angry if they are worshipped instead of God. But lest the weak and trembling heart perchance say unto itself: If then the demons are incensed because they are not worshipped, I fear to offend them; what can even their chief the devil do unto thee? If he had any power over us no one of us would remain. Are not daily so many things said against him by the mouth of Christians, and yet the harvest of Christians increaseth. When thou art angry with the most depraved of thy slaves, thou givest him the name, "Satan," Devil. Perhaps in this thou dost err, since thou sayest it to a man, and thy immoderate anger hurrieth thee to revile the image of God: and yet thou choosest a term thou deeply hatest, to apply to him. If he could, would he not revenge himself? But it is not allowed: and he doth so much only as is allowed him. For when he wished to tempt Job, he had to ask power to do so: and he could do nothing had he not received power. Why then dost thou not fearlessly worship God, without whose will no one hurteth thee, and by whose permission thou art: chastened, not overcome? For if it shall have pleased the Lord thy God to permit some man to hurt thee, or some spirit: He will chasten thee, that thou mayest cry unto Him: "Confounded," therefore, "be all they that delight in vain gods: worship Him, all ye His angels." Let Pagans learn to worship God: they wish to worship Angels: let them imitate Angels, and worship Him who is worshipped by Angels. "Worship Him, all ye His angels." Let that Angel worship who was sent to Cornelius (for worshipping Him he sent Cornelius to Peter), himself Peter's fellow-servant; let him worship Christ, Peter's Lord. "Worship Him, all ye gods!"