by Sandy Kirby Quandt
During a recent Sunday School class discussion on Exodus 32 where the Israelites convinced Aaron to build them a golden calf to worship, while Moses tarried on Mount Sinai receiving the handwritten commandments from God, we wondered why in the world Aaron gave in to the people’s request. What was he thinking? Or not thinking?
One person said she was glad all our misdeeds aren’t written down for generations to look at and critique. Yep. So am I.
Because we know all Scripture is God-breathed and given for our instruction, after class I pondered what we’d discussed, and what God wanted me to learn from this very familiar lesson.
I’d like us to consider one lesson I came up with. The second lesson on peer pressure will wait for another time. 🙂
Although Aaron sinned by giving in to the people, forming an idol to worship, and honoring it instead of worshipping and honoring the One True Jehovah God, God gave Aaron, and everyone else who participated in the idol worship, an opportunity to repent, follow God’s command, and avenge his honor.
Aaron and some of the others did repent, and they did follow God’s command to avenge God’s honor by killing those who chose not to repent.
Harsh to our way of thinking, yes, but the point I want us to consider in this part of Aaron’s story is the fact it is in the Bible for a reason.
I don’t believe the sole purpose of Aaron’s story is for us to scratch our heads and question how in the world he could do such a thing. Although we will do that. No. I believe Aaron’s story is there for us to prick our hearts and realize if our story was recorded for the whole world to read, we’d be the one others scratched their heads at and wondered how we could do such a thing.
I believe Aaron’s story is yet one more example God uses to display his amazing grace. Just as God allowed anyone who would accept it, the opportunity to turn from their idol worship, repent, and follow him and him alone, he gives each of us the same opportunity to turn from the things in our lives we’ve made into idols, repent, and follow him and him alone.
Have you ever consider Aaron’s story this way before?
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Finally, he (Moses) turned to Aaron and demanded, “What did these people do to you to make you bring such terrible sin upon them?”
“Don’t get so upset, my lord,” Aaron replied. “You yourself know how evil these people are. They said to me, ‘Make us gods who will lead us. We don’t know what happened to this fellow Moses, who brought us here from the land of Egypt.’ So I told them, ‘Whoever has gold jewelry, take it off.’ When they brought it to me, I simply threw it into the fire—and out came this calf!” Exodus 32:21-24 (NLT)
I wish you well.
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