Ep. 042: The Golden Calf

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Ep. 042: The Golden Calf

Moses stayed with God for forty days and forty nights. The people grew restless, and finally they went to Aaron and said, “We don’t know what’s happened to Moses. Make us a god we can see, one that will be with us.”
So they gave Aaron their gold earrings, and he melted them down. He then formed the gold into the shape of a calf. The people were happy with this and said, “This is the god who brought us out of Egypt!” They sacrificed to it and had a feast. Afterwards they celebrated with a wild party.
On the mountain, God said to Moses, “Go down to your people, the ones you brought out of Egypt. They’ve corrupted themselves and turned away from what I told them to do. They’ve made an idol and bowed down to it with sacrifices. Step aside and don’t stop Me. I’ll destroy them and make your descendants into a great nation.”
Moses pleaded with God, “Don’t be so angry with your people, the ones you brought out of Egypt with a mighty hand. If you destroy them now, the Egyptians will laugh and say you brought them here to kill them. Remember your promise to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. You said their descendants would inherit the land, and become as numerous as the stars in the sky.” So the Lord listened to Moses and didn’t destroy the people.
Moses then went down the mountain with the two stone tablets God had given him. He got angry when he saw the calf and the dancing. He threw the two tablets down and shattered them on the ground. He burned the golden calf in the fire, ground it to powder, put it in water, and made the Israelites drink it.
Then Moses said to Aaron, “Why did you make this golden calf? Look at the people! See how it has caused them to go into deep sin.”
Aaron said, “Please don’t be angry with me. You know how wicked these people are. They said, ‘Make us a god.’ I told them to give me their gold. I threw it into the fire and … out came this calf!”
Moses then stood at the gate of the camp. He saw how the people were still out of control. He shouted, “Those who are on the Lord’s side, come and stand with me!” The sons of Levi separated themselves from the rest of the people and stood with Moses. The Lord then commanded them to strap on their swords and fight against those who refused to stand with Moses. Three thousand men died that day.
Afterwards, Moses called the people together and said, “You have committed a great sin. I’ll go before the Lord, and maybe I can make an atonement for you.” With that, he went back up the mountain.

 

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