Highlights In Today's Reading:
The bull, the principal god of Egypt, later became a god of the Ten Tribes of Israel, a great sin (I Kings 12:28). This was a pitiful apostasy of turning from the only True God. Don't be deceived. Carefully read Col. 1:10-23.
The Lord said unto Moses, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people (32:9). While Moses was on the Mount getting direction from God as to how people should worship the Holy God, the Israelites created a golden calf to worship (32:1-6). This verifies why so many are deceived: For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him, and for Him (Colossians 1:16).
The golden calf stands as a symbol of human intellect devising a system of worship apart from God. This verifies that the heart is deceitful above all things (Jer. 17:9). The significance of Aaron's golden calf is that people, left to themselves, will worship the works of their own hands (Acts 7:41). Cain was the first example of such a deceived heart (Gen. 4:3,5).
Not only did the Israelites violate the second Commandment by worshiping the graven image but Aaron (sinfully submitted to their request and actually) made (a) proclamation, and said, Tomorrow is a feast to the Lord. And they . . . offered burnt offerings (Ex. 32:5-6). All this was an abomination to God for whom to obey is better than sacrifice (I Sam. 15:22). Jesus asked: Why call ye Me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say (Luke 6:46)? There are no substitutes for obedience. God-ordained leadership was essential to the spiritual life of Israel. While Moses was on the Mount, the Israelites gave up waiting for his return in God's timing (Ex. 32:1). The majority "voted" to dismiss Moses as their pastor and to vote in someone who would go along with their "popular" ideas. Aaron made himself available, and he willingly cooperated to satisfy their idolatrous lust (32:2-6).
Pray for the men of God who have the courage to faithfully preach the Word . . . reprove, rebuke, (and) exhort (II Tim. 4:1-4), and remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the Word of God. . . . submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief (Heb. 13:7,17). Your pastor should be upheld in your daily prayers that he might have the courage to be the faithful, godly servant of the Lord, unlike Aaron, who listened to the voice of the people instead of the voice of God.
Paul warned: They shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry (II Tim. 4:4-5).
Thought for Today:
Too often it is those who are rich in this world's goods that rule the Church instead of those of this world rich in faith (James 2:5).
As the One who is ever-present. My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest (peace) (Ex. 33:14). He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee (Heb. 13:5; compare Matt. 11:28; John 14:27).
32:7 corrupted themselves =behaved sinfully; 32:9 stiffnecked people =willfully disobedient; 32:12 mischief =evil intent; repent of =denounce; 32:14 repented =moved with compassion and turned from; 32:20 strawed =scattered; 32:25 naked =out of control; made them naked =allowed them to sin; 32:34 will visit =inflict punishment; 32:35 plagued the people =caused them to suffer; 34:10 terrible =amazing; that I will do =an awesome fear of God; 34:12 snare =drove to be your ruin; 34:13 groves =idol places of worship; 34:17 molten gods =metal idols; 34:19 openeth the matrix =womb, the firstborn; firstling =firstborn; 34:21 in earing time =at plowing time; 34:26 seethe a kid =took a young goat; 34:27 after the tenor of =according to.
Pray for Staff: Ken Sharp • Government Officials: Rep. Brian Bilbray (CA), Rep. Linda Sánchez (CA), and Rep. Bennie Thompson (MS) • Country: Zambia (10 million) in south-central Africa • Major languages: English and 70 indigenous languages • Religious freedom • 30% Roman Catholic; 25% Protestant; 24% ancestor worship, magic, and witchcraft; 19% cults • Prayer Suggestion: Lift up your heart to God in prayer (Lam. 3:41).
Optional Reading: Matthew 28
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 5:3-4