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This ALTERNATION is a look at false gods and idols—they are shown to be useless.
1) The two FRAME elements present the futility of creating false gods and idols (verse 9 and 18). They are made and worshipped for lack of knowledge and understanding. Their eyes cannot see and their hearts cannot comprehend. Frames are normally emphatic.
2) The QUESTION in the A element (verse 10) asks Israel to recall times where an idol did not live up to its expectation. Today, this same question is used by the Holy Spirit to have us recall times where we relied on something we reverently made which did not live up to its expectation.
3) There is a VARIATION in the wooden idol as seen by its much longer length and detail. While all graven images are futile (verse 9), wooden idols may have been emphasized because they were more common and easier to create.
4) The TRANSPOSITION of the B′′ element, causing it to appear after the second FRAME element, adds emphasis to verses 19B. Notice how that idolater first discerned there is a problem in this verse. That is emphatic.
5) The CONCLUDING SUMMARY reveals how a person gains their understanding: “Is there not a lie in my right hand?” (verse 20). He understands that the man cannot deliver himself, but the Lord can. For the person today that deals with a form of idolatry, that understanding may be his rhema word. The CHIASM SUBSTRUCTURE (verses 21 to 23) adds to the emphatic impact of the concluding summary to show what true worship should entail.