Violation of the Second Commandment comes in two ways; the worship of false gods by means of religious statues, pictures, symbols etc., and the second the worship of the True and Living God by the means of religious statues, pictures, symbols etc.
The first is obvious, the second should be obvious to anyone with any kind of understand of the Word of God. Millions of people who claim to be good Christians defy God by having religious statues, pictures, and symbols in their home.
To whom then will ye liken God? Or what likeness will ye compare unto him? The workman melteth a graven image, and the goldsmith spreadeth it over with gold, and casteth silver chains. He that is so impoverished that he hath no oblation chooseth a tree that will not rot; he seeketh unto him a cunning workman to prepare a graven image that shall not be moved. Have ye not known? Have ye not heard? Hath it not been told you from the beginning? Have ye not understood from the foundations of the earth? It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in: That bringeth the princes to nothing; he maketh the judges of the earth as vanity... To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? Saith the Holy One. Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth… Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength… (Isaiah 40:1-31).
The word graven according to http://www.thefreedictionary.com is defined as:
Adj. 1. graven - cut into a desired shape; "graven images"; "sculptured representations"
2. graven - cut or impressed into a surface; "an incised design"; "engraved invitations"
Although you didn’t engrave the image or symbol yourself, it was still engraved by a specialist (goldsmith, silversmith, wood smith) just as I engrave knowledge and therefore call myself Locksmif (locksmith)… because knowledge is the key! ;-)
LET IT BE KNOWN: 98% of the things that most of us were raised to believe were holy are not. If you research the origins of most of what you consider holy, you will run back into a tree, or a rock! Research the man in the pictures of Jesus. He always looks the same because the original painter used the likeness of a real person (his brother) to paint ‘Jesus’ image. The fish magnet on the back of your car or on your refrigerator is of pagan origin as well.
“The fish symbol has been used for millennia worldwide as a religious symbol associated with the Pagan Great Mother Goddess.” “In the Middle East, the Great Goddess of Ephesus was portrayed as a woman with a fish amulet over her genitals.” “The symbol itself, the eating of fish on Friday and the association of the symbol with deity were all taken over by the early Church from Pagan sources. Only the sexual component was deleted.” (quotes taken from http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_symb.htm )
THE CROSS: This was always odd to me (even when I wore one) because Jesus is no longer on the cross; The cross was used as a means for Capital punishment. If you wear a cross around your neck or any other place, it is equivalent to wearing an electric chair, or lethal injection table; for them both served the same purpose. Also it should be noted that Jesus (and the two thieves) were not the only 3 to be crucified. Some days the Romans had 500 people a day hanging on the cross. This is why it is never called holy in the Bible!
Imagine going to Jerusalem (or other major city) to worship or visit and as you approach the town the highway was lined on both sides with people being crucified, in much the same way major cities are lined with street lights. That’s a lot of crosses.
God is not a picture, symbol or statue. Therefore (as the 2nd Commandment points out) should not be worshiped or prayed to by the use of statues, pictures, or symbol’s. The same holds true for using statues or images to worship or pray to the dead saints of the past (or presently living saints).
“…Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any. They that make a graven image are all of them vanity; and their delectable things shall not profit; and they are their own witnesses; they see not, nor know; that they may be ashamed. Who hath formed a god, or molten a graven image that is profitable for nothing? Behold, all his fellows shall be ashamed: and the workmen, they are of men: let them all be gathered together, let them stand up; yet they shall fear, and they shall be ashamed together… He burneth part thereof in the fire; with part thereof he eateth flesh; he roasteth roast, and is satisfied: yea, he warmeth himself, and saith, Aha, I am warm, I have seen the fire: And the residue thereof he maketh a god, even his graven image: he falleth down unto it, and worshippeth it, and prayeth unto it, and saith, Deliver me; for thou art my god… And none considereth in his heart, neither is there knowledge nor understanding to say, I have burned part of it in the fire; yea, also I have baked bread upon the coals thereof; I have roasted flesh, and eaten it: and shall I make the residue thereof an abomination? shall I fall down to the stock of a tree? He feedeth on ashes: a deceived heart hath turned him aside, that he cannot deliver his soul, nor say, Is there not a lie in my right hand” (Isaiah 44:8-20)?
Lastly: God is not made of wood, plastic, cement, or marble; Therefore God is not to be represented by wood, plastic, cement, or marble.
"Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device. And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead" (Acts 17:29-31).
FOOD 4 THOUGHT (you do the dishes): Don’t forget the last part of the commandment. “visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;”
Don’t curse your children, and grandchildren (and great grand-children). Destroy your graven images.