Wednesday, May 1, 2013

05/01/13 - Lessons from the Golden Calf

I am too much like the stubborn people who built the "golden calf" in Exodus 32, are you?

In verse 1 we see the people going to their leader, "Up, make us a gods...." Instead of trusting their leader they grew impatient and demanding. How often do I look to my leader to be at my beckoning call? I want to guide and lead, instead of trusting the beautiful line of authority God established. 

Then the people go on complaining about their leader to another leader. This caused division! 

Aaron, then went on to "appease" these stubborn people by telling them to give him all their gold.

Now think about it, these people are in the desert and he asks for their possessions of gold. Verse 2 says, "Take off the rings of gold that are in the ears of your wives..." Gold, this fine, precious metal is what the people give up because they aren't willing to wait on God.

What do I give up because I grow impatient on God's timing? How often do we run ahead of God, willing to give up precious things, because His timing is not YOUR timing! I've seen people race ahead of God and marry a non-believer because they don't want to wait on God's timing. 

After Aaron build the calf the first thing they say, "These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!" vs. 4. Are you kidding me?!? Did they forget that the Red Sea parted? Did they forget how God brought 10 plagues? 

How often do we forget God's faithfulness when we are in a season of waiting? We must reflect and remember His goodness to avoid carving our own "golden calf'". 

Aaron went on to build an alter to the Lord and proclaimed they would have a feast to the Lord. Here we see mixing idol worship, with worship of the Lord. Oh, yes friends, we can be in church "worshiping" God, yet clinging to our idols. This is not worship of the Lord, you can't have both, you must choose! 

After their "worship" service they got up "to play" (vs. 6). Really!?! They are flat out disobeying God and they just want to play!? Do we "play" Christian? Do we go on Sunday, but by Monday we are worshiping the idol of self? Do we claim to have faith, yet "play" with the things of this world?

We see God tells Moses to go back to the people and Moses gets so mad at the people he breaks the first set of the Ten Commandments! In Chapter 34 Moses makes new tablets and the Lord proclaims in verse 6-7: "The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgressions and sin..." 

What grace! What love! 

But God adds to Moses that: "You shall not make for yourself any gods of cast metal." 

There is more to take from this story, but as I read this morning these thoughts just jumped at me! 

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