"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32 . . . . .

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Wednesday, June 9, 2021

EXODUS – GOD’s MIRACULOUS DELIVERANCE of ISRAEL FROM EGYPT – Chapter THIRTY TWO

Contributing commentaries by pastors Sonny Islas, Albert Lopez and James Fire

Complete Study of Exodus by pastor Chuck Smith 

EXODUS 32: “THE GOLDEN CALF” – By Sonny Islas, watch the Youtube video here.

INTRODUCTION:
At this point in the Book of Exodus, Moses is on Mount Sinai with God, and has been up there fasting from bread and water for forty days and forty nights. After the forty days were complete, God gave Moses the Ten Commandments written by the finger of God on two stone tablets (these details are found in DEUT 9:9-11). 

EXODUS 32:1
1 Now when the people saw that Moses delayed coming down from the mountain, the people gathered together to Aaron, and said to him, "Come, make us gods that shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him
.

Now when the people saw that Moses delayed coming down from the mountain: They quickly reverted to hardcore idol worship and sexual sin - as we will soon see. They became impatient and without Moses, their evil desires could no longer be restrained.

Here we see the importance of godly leadership – Good spiritual leaders are a means of grace in the sense that they are used by God to be sin destroyers and soul sanctifiers to some degree. They do this through their biblical teaching and their biblical living/influence. Like salt, good leaders stall the rot.

This incident reminds me somewhat of Jesus’ parable about the evil servant in MATTHEW 24:48-51 where the evil servant said “My Master is delaying His coming” so he begins mistreating others, cuddles up with godless friends and starts to get drunk. Jesus comes when this evil servant least expects it, then this evil servant gets cut in two, is exposed as a hypocrite and is lastly cast into hell.

The people gathered together to Aaron and said, “Come make us godS that shall go before us”
“…make us gods”??? that's plural - as though One God was not enough?! And any “god” that can be made, is no god at all!
By definition, God is all-powerful, Creator, self-sustained and eternal. By the way, idols can’t walk nor see, they have to be carried, which means that they want gods they have to bear on their backs like donkeys! We need the God who can carry us – all of us!

EXODUS 32:2-3
2 And Aaron said to them, "Break off the golden earrings which are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me." 3 "So all the people broke off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them to Aaron
.

Here we expected Aaron to refuse this blasphemous request (– or demand?) but instead he participates. At this point Aaron’s motto was, “Let’s give the people what they want!”
Many Pastors have been known to give into a congregation's desires over God’s desires by being pragmatic and ‘seeker friendly’. After all, EXODUS 24:9-11 tells us that Aaron “saw God and enjoyed a meal in His presence” – but God wasn’t in the form of a calf or a bull! How quickly did Aaron forget!

Aaron caves in and asks for the gold needed to mold a golden calf “Break off the golden earrings…” – false worship and unbiblical beliefs and actions in any congregation is the result of poor leadership and a group that disregards God’s Word.

Notice that in EXODUS 24 God wanted the people to give of their gold, silver, precious stones, and other materials joyfully and willfully for the Tabernacle that is, the Tent of Worship, but here they are giving their gold up for Satan’s cause.
We too have a choice on what we will do with what God has blessed us with. We can either advance God’s Kingdom or Satan’s kingdom – that is, if we use our money to sin against God like they did here.

EXODUS 32:4
And he received the gold from their hand, and he fashioned it with an engraving tool, and made a molded calf. Then they said, "This is your god, O Israel, that brought you out of the land of Egypt!

He (Aaron) fashioned it (this speaks of detail and precision) with an engraving tool (he carefully selected just the right tool for the job) and made a molded calf (some type of molding to pour melted gold into). 

In EXODUS 31 God gives men the ability to creatively design things for the tabernacle and here we find Aaron of all people using his God given skill to sin against God. We all have God given skills and we too can choose to honor or dishonor God with those skills. Aaron is all in – he collects the gold and handcrafts this idol!

Then they said this is your god, O Israel, that brought you out of the land of Israel!
Their thinking became so warped that they gave the credit of their grand Exodus from Egypt to this golden calf! By the way, this golden calf was a copy of the Egyptian god Apis.  

What an insult to the LORD Who delivered them with a mighty hand! Any time we give anyone or anything the credit for the work God does for us we are acting no different than the Israelites here.

They broke the first three commandments right off the bat: 

EXODUS 20:2-7
You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image… to bow to and serve
" and “you shall not take the LORD’s Name in vain.”

There have been a few golden calves in the church in America for some time now: that is, ungodly and self-exalting religious entertainment, the word-faith prosperity movement and lots of charismatic chaos, the NAR, and the Emergent movement which denies the Penal Substitutionary Atonement by calling it cosmic child abuse; but today a few other NEW GOLDEN CALVES ARE being created and erected in “Christian churches/circles.”

Wokeness mixed with Critical Race Theory seems to be the new golden calf of our time. 

Critical Race Theory (CRT) is basically justified racism. Where blacks are right and allowed to hate whites and are calling for whites to hate whites or at least apologize for being white. CRT teaches that all white people are racist even if they don’t know it or deny it. CRT supporters say that white evangelical pastors are the problem for not being black enough.

For a bit more on the issue of racism that ‘wokeness’ and ‘CRT’ claims to address and present solutions, check out the following TTUF articles and specifically this article, The MARXIST AGENDA by TTUF writer, Anne Kisly.  

And pastors and churches like Aaron here, are giving into this stupidity; for example, David Platt – recently said and I quote “As a white pastor…, I am part of the problem.” He apologizes for being white.
[If ] we need to apologize [for anything, it's] to GOD for being sinners! Apologize for sin not skin, right? 

Do you see how this distorts the gospel? 
Louie Giglio apologized for being white.
Matt Chandler apologized for being white. 
And few others have jumped on the CRT golden calf in the Name of God.

By the way, CRT is backed by Black Lives Matter (check out pastor Sonny’s teaching on BLM in this TTUF article; also available in the article is the Facebook video, here) and basically teaches that there are only two categories – Oppressor and oppressed:

Starting with the white man – the white man is the oppressor, black man (including all other ethnicities) are the oppressed.
The same with the straight man/m
onogamous marriage oppressor; gay man/Homosexual “marriage” oppressed.
Male pastor/oppressor; female wanna be “pastor”/oppressed. 
Police officers/oppressor; black citizens/oppressed. 
Rich/oppressor; poor (even if they are poor due to laziness)/oppressed. Christianity/oppressor; all other religions/oppressed. 

Do you get the point? This is what’s creeping into many churches. 
The goal is to snuff out the light of the gospel and the blazing light of God’ Word, the Bible altogether.

Wokeness is also a significant part of progressive “Christianity” (emergent philosophy is also included) and is another golden calf which is similar to CRT.
Both the Black Lives Matter and the LGBTQ are for this. Wokeness is basically to be awakened to all forms of injustice even homosexual injustice. So there are more and more churches allowing for gay pastors and ministry workers – because they don’t want to be accused of oppressing the homosexual community.

Modern day golden calves is the worship of money, self, homosexuality, disorder and racism in the Name of God and love.

EXODUS 32:5-8
5 So when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it. And Aaron made a proclamation and said, "Tomorrow is a feast to the LORD." 6 Then they rose early on the next day, offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. 7 And the LORD said to Moses, "Go, get down! For your people whom you brought out of the land of Egypt have corrupted themselves. 8 "They have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them. They have made themselves a molded calf, and worshiped it and sacrificed to it, and said, 'This is your god, O Israel, that brought you out of the land of Egypt!

They built an altar for it, they offered burnt offerings, they worshiped and sacrificed to it! All in the Name of the One true God!
They were ignorantly involved in demon worship not the worship of Yahweh. 

1 CORINTHIANS 10:20 says,
Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons.” 

While Moses saw an idolatry frenzy, God saw demons in the camp – because demon worship is what was happening here! “…they sat down to eat, drink and rose up to play: Vs 7 says that they “corrupted (perverted) themselves.” Disorder, drunkenness, intoxication, and sexual sin is always accompanied by idolatry. 

They partied in a nasty and perverted way. In 1 COR 10:7-11 Paul warns the Church of idolatry and sexual sin and how the LORD was displeased with many of them in the wilderness and consequently killed them off and how this idolatrous incident along with God’s disciplining hand was to serve as an example for the church.

Idolatry always leads to immorality. We see that in ROMANS 1 – They rejected the Creator to worship His creation - then came a sexual revolution followed by a homosexual revolution concluding with all out confusion. 

We see it with Islam where “faithful” Muslim men are promised beautiful virgin woman called “Huri’s” as sex toys in the afterlife (a lie). These Muslims think they're getting hot women but what they are really getting is a hot hell where they will never see women again! Or the Mormons who collect women to “marry” – it’s pure perversion and a lust that flows out of their ears for control and power. Even in the Christian life – when a Christian falls into sexual sin it’s because he or she is putting something or someone before the LORD.

EXODUS 32:9-10
9 And the LORD said to Moses, "I have seen this people, and indeed it is a stiff-necked people! 10 "Now therefore, let Me alone, that My wrath may burn hot against them and I may consume them. And I will make of you a great nation
.

Here we clearly see what makes God angry – idolatry mixed with all kinds of filth and confusion. Here God is willing to, in a sense, start all over with Moses – but Moses refuses, implores as he puts his humility on display. It’s as though God was so righteously white hot that He was entertaining the thought of completely annihilating the entire camp minus Moses and his kiddos – again, to start over.

EXODUS 32:11-14
11 Then Moses pleaded with the LORD his God, and said: "LORD, why does Your wrath burn hot against Your people whom You have brought out of the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand? 12 "Why should the Egyptians speak, and say, 'He brought them out to harm them, to kill them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth'? Turn from Your fierce wrath, and relent from this harm to Your people. 13 "Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, Your servants, to whom You swore by Your own self, and said to them, 'I will multiply your descendants as the stars of heaven; and all this land that I have spoken of I give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.'" 14 So the LORD relented from the harm which He said He would do to His people
.

Moses begs God to hold off on totally wiping everyone out. God was ready to set them on fire like He did with Sodom and Gomorrah. Here we can see just how much Moses truly cared about God’s glory and reputation. Moses knew that this would only give the Egyptians a reason to talk trash about God. 

EXODUS 32:15-16
15 And Moses turned and went down from the mountain, and the two tablets of the Testimony were in his hand. The tablets were written on both sides; on the one side and on the other they were written. 16 Now the tablets were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God engraved on the tablets
.

I’m sure that Moses thought God’s Word will straighten them out! He came down excited to share God's holy ways with his people. This is what every preacher hopes for – for God’s powerful Word to transform hearts and lives.
The tables were the work of God and the writing of God. God has made His will known through His writings.

EXODUS 32:17-19
17 And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said to Moses, "There is a noise of war in the camp." 18 But he said: "It is not the noise of the shout of victory, Nor the noise of the cry of defeat, But the sound of singing I hear." 19 So it was, as soon as he came near the camp, that he saw the calf and the dancing. So Moses' anger became hot, and he cast the tablets out of his hands and broke them at the foot of the mountain
.

Moses became red hot – a righteous anger over came him. Moses felt something of what God felt regarding this perverted frenzy. He broke the tablets, and it was a sign that they and everyone else will break them as well. Man breaks the laws of God and Moses casting them to the ground was symbolic of this.

EXODUS 32:20
20 Then he took the calf which they had made, burned it in the fire, and ground it to powder; and he scattered it on the water and made the children of Israel drink it
.

A good leader grinds sin, lies, and idolatry to powder. Moses made them drink it as a way of reminding them that the golden calf they created was worthless, so much so that it was drinkable. It was a way of getting them to understand that they will reap what they sowed. You want fellowship with a false god? Here you go, drink up!

EXODUS 32:21
21 And Moses said to Aaron, "What did this people do to you that you have brought so great a sin upon them?"

Aaron was responsible. At this point I am sure Aaron is thinking “I really messed things up this time!” Aaron was in a sense, second in command, seeing that he is Moses’ big brother and spokesman. Aaron did the wrong thing – made the calf while Moses did the right thing – he crushed it to powder. Moses must have thought that this sin was so great that forgiveness was most likely not possible.

EXODUS 32:22-24
22 So Aaron said, "Do not let the anger of my lord become hot. You know the people, that they are set on evil. 23 "For they said to me, 'Make us gods that shall go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.' 24 "And I said to them, 'Whoever has any gold, let them break it off.' So they gave it to me, and I cast it into the fire, and this calf came out."

Moses begged God to cool down, by reminding God as though He needs a reminder that the people are set on evil, which means that they can’t help themselves – have mercy! Aaron makes it seem like he threw gold into the fire and a golden calf just popped out like – ouila! He doesn’t take responsibility for his actions and even lies to Moses’ face about his sin!

We must understand that we sin in private long before we sin in public. Sinful actions of this magnitude are premeditated. Sin comes to the service like this when we fail to kill it while it’s still a thought or desire in the heart. It’s a matter of the heart and the mind long before it becomes a matter of action.
It’s vital that we kill sin when it enters our thoughts or it will be realized in our words and deeds!

For example: The man who is caught cheating on his wife can’t say “I don’t know what happened, I just got into my car and ended up in another woman’s bed!” Or the man dabbling with porn who can’t say “I just turned on my computer and lo and behold nastiness automatically appeared on the screen.’’ All outward sin is first inward sin.

EXODUS 32:25-28
25 Now when Moses saw that the people were unrestrained (for Aaron had not restrained them, to their shame among their enemies), 26 then Moses stood in the entrance of the camp, and said, "Whoever is on the LORD'S side-come to me." And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together to him. 27 And he said to them, "Thus says the LORD God of Israel: 'Let every man put his sword on his side and go in and out from entrance to entrance throughout the camp, and let every man kill his brother, every man his companion, and every man his neighbor.' 28 So the sons of Levi did according to the word of Moses. And about three thousand men of the people fell that day
.

Moses saw that the people were unrestrained, that is to say, “naked”: The soldiers took off their armor to party–hard and women were naked. All the people seemed to be completely out of order because Aaron failed to restrain them with truth and physical authority - like dispatching soldiers. 

Three thousand people who were all in on this were killed. I’m just surprised that Aaron was spared. What is interesting is that here, when the LORD gave the Ten Commandments 3,000 people were killed but in the New Testament on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was given 3,000 people were saved through Peter’s sermon in ACTS 2.

This shows us that the Law of GOD, out of the purity of its holiness can only condemn us sinners (ROM 3:19) and see that we are justly slain under His judgment; whereas by the Spirit of grace, we are given salvation and eternal life, no longer condemned, but justified by Christ through faith in Him (ROM 5:20; GAL 2:21)!

EXODUS 32:29-35
29 Then Moses said, "Consecrate yourselves today to the LORD, that He may bestow on you a blessing this day, for every man has opposed his son and his brother." 30 ¶ Now it came to pass on the next day that Moses said to the people, "You have committed a great sin. So now I will go up to the LORD; perhaps I can make atonement for your sin." 31 Then Moses returned to the LORD and said, "Oh, these people have committed a great sin, and have made for themselves a god of gold! 32 "Yet now, if You will forgive their sin-but if not, I pray, blot me out of Your book which You have written." 33 And the LORD said to Moses, "Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book. 34 "Now therefore, go, lead the people to the place of which I have spoken to you. Behold, My Angel shall go before you. Nevertheless, in the day when I visit for punishment, I will visit punishment upon them for their sin." 35 So the LORD plagued the people because of what they did with the calf which Aaron made
.

Moses is willing to die in their place but only One can do that and that’s Jesus. Moses thought he was very much loved by God, he was still sinful and therefore an unworthy sacrifice. Paul also had this same sacrificial heart, where he said that he was willing to be cursed so that all of Israel would be saved (ROM 9:3)

I will blot him out of My Book – some believe that this is referring to the Book of Life. Others believe that it’s God’s heavenly records of the living. And that it could also just point to cutting people’s lives short by pulling out their death certificate ‘early’.

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