March 8
Exodus 32:1-4, 15-19

The golden calf

Moses had been up on Mount Sinai for a long time and the people in the camp below were becoming impatient. They said to Aaron, “We don’t know what has happened to Moses, so make a god that will lead us.”

So Aaron told the people to take off the golden earrings they had received from the Egyptians and he melted the gold. Then he formed it into the shape of a calf.

As Moses was coming down from the mountain he saw the people worshiping the calf. He was so furious that he smashed the stone tablets the Lord had given him. When he got to the camp, he melted the golden calf, ground the gold into a fine powder and mixed it with the drinking water.

What is idolatry?

Isn’t this one of the silliest things you’ve ever heard? These people made a statue of a calf and actually believed that it had led them out of Egypt! Although they had made the calf themselves, they respected it as though it had become greater than them. The calf became their idol!

Idolatry means worshiping or believing in things instead of in God. Do you remember the second commandment? Look up Exodus 20:2-5 and read it again.

Even though you probably don’t have idols in your room and you don’t bow down to things in nature, there is a danger of other things creeping into your heart; things that become so important that you think about them all the time. Be careful that the things you have, or long for, don’t take God’s place in your heart.

Verse for today

You shall have no other gods before me. Exodus 20:3