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Sunday, July 24 2011

The Mount Sinai Riot

While Moses was up on Mount Sinai (see also The Mount Sinai Prophecy) receiving The Ten Commandments from Jesus Christ (i.e. "that Rock was Christ" within 1 Corinthians 10:1-4; see also the section below and Why Observe The True Sabbath?), the "children of Israel" grew restless.

"32:1 And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him." (Exodus 32:1 KJV)

So, with the Presence of the LORD still visible and audible to them from atop the nearby mountain, they made a toy religion with which to amuse themselves (see also Toy Bibles and Is Your Religion Your Religion?).

"32:2 And Aaron said unto them, Break off the golden earrings, which are in the ears of your wives, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring them unto me. 32:3 And all the people brake off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them unto Aaron. 32:4 And he received them at their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, after he had made it a molten calf: and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

32:5 And when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, To morrow is a feast to the LORD. 32:6 And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play." (Exodus 32:2-6 KJV)

"Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play"

When the LORD saw what the people were doing (Moses couldn't see it, yet), He told Moses to stand clear so "therefore let Me alone, that My wrath may wax hot against them." Moses was an amazing man; he did something that very few humans were able to do (Abraham is the only one that came close). Moses calmed the LORD's anger, pleading "LORD, why doth Thy wrath wax hot against Thy people, which Thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand?" In so doing, Moses saved the lives of thousands of people who had corrupted themselves and made themselves enemies of the LORD, Who was Christ (see also Friends Of Jesus).

The Golden Calf

"32:7 And the LORD said unto Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, which thou broughtest out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves: 32:8 They have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them: they have made them a molten calf, and have worshipped it, and have sacrificed thereunto, and said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which have brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

32:9 And the LORD said unto Moses, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people: 32:10 Now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may wax hot against them, and that I may consume them: and I will make of thee a great nation.

32:11 And Moses besought the LORD his God, and said, LORD, why doth thy wrath wax hot against thy people, which thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand? 32:12 Wherefore should the Egyptians speak, and say, For mischief did he bring them out, to slay them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth? Turn from thy fierce wrath, and repent of this evil against thy people. 32:13 Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom thou swarest by thine own self, and saidst unto them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have spoken of will I give unto your seed, and they shall inherit it for ever. 32:14 And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people." (Exodus 32:7-14 KJV)

Moses had just saved the lives of those entire people (the particular Hebrew word translated as "evil" in verse 14 above actually means destruction; the LORD doesn't do "evil" - people do). But when Moses went down from the mountain and saw what the LORD had already seen from a distance, Moses also became angry, just as the LORD had done. We don't know what Moses said to them, or called them, but we do know what he did - his "anger waxed hot, and he cast the tables out of his hands, and brake them beneath the mount." It was for that reason that a second set of The Ten Commandments was later made i.e. "34:1 And the LORD said unto Moses, Hew thee two tables of stone like unto the first: and I will write upon these tables the words that were in the first tables, which thou brakest" (Exodus 34:1 KJV).

"32:15 And Moses turned, and went down from the mount, and the two tables of the testimony were in his hand: the tables were written on both their sides; on the one side and on the other were they written. 32:16 And the tables were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, graven upon the tables. 32:17 And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said unto Moses, There is a noise of war in the camp. 32:18 And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear. 32:19 And it came to pass, as soon as he came nigh unto the camp, that he saw the calf, and the dancing: and Moses' anger waxed hot, and he cast the tables out of his hands, and brake them beneath the mount. 32:20 And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it in the fire, and ground it to powder, and strowed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it." (Exodus 32:15-20 KJV)

Even after all of that, many of the people were still violently rioting and running naked. Keeping in mind that Moses had not long before intervened with the LORD to save the lives of all of them, Moses then called for the assistance of his fellow Levites, those of them who had remained faithful to the LORD (which unfortunately didn't include Aaron, up to that point while Moses was away), to stop them from threatening the lives and safety of all of the others. A riot of thousands of violent, naked (which would imply that not only sexual immorality was rampant, but that sexual assault was also) people was stopped: "there fell of the people that day about three thousand men" (it doesn't say how many women).

"32:25 And when Moses saw that the people were naked; for Aaron had made them naked unto their shame among their enemies:

32:26 Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Who is on the LORD's side? let him come unto me.

And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together unto him.

32:27 And he said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbour.

32:28 And the children of Levi did according to the word of Moses: and there fell of the people that day about three thousand men. 32:29 For Moses had said, Consecrate yourselves to day to the LORD, even every man upon his son, and upon his brother; that he may bestow upon you a blessing this day." (Exodus 32:25-29 KJV)

The riot at Mount Sinai was recorded as a matter of Bible History, not merely to show us what they did, but moreover to show us what we must not do, for "these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted" (see also Lethal Lust).

"10:1 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; 10:2 And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; 10:3 And did all eat the same spiritual meat; 10:4 And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

10:5 But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness. 10:6 Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted. 10:7 Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play. 10:8 Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand. 10:9 Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents. 10:10 Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.

10:11 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. 10:12 Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall." (1 Corinthians 10:1-12 KJV)

Fact Finder: When Israel split into two independent kingdoms because of the idolatry of King Solomon, did the golden calf immediately return to the people of Israel? What again happened to Israel because of their idolatry that they were committing even in the promised land?
See The Return Of The Golden Calves


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This Day In History, July 24

1132: The Battle of Nocera between Ranulf II of Alife and Roger II of Sicily began.

1148: During the Second Crusade (see The Crusades), Louis VII of France laid siege to Damascus.

1411: The Battle of Harlaw; it was one of the bloodiest battles in Scotland.

1534: French explorer Jacques Cartier, while on the first of his three voyages to North America, erected a cross at Gaspe, claiming the land for Francis I of France.

1567: Mary Queen of Scots abdicated; James VI became King of Scotland at the age of 1.

1701: Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac founded a trading post at Fort Pontchartrain, which later became the city of Detroit.

1704: Britain captured Gibraltar from Spain.

1759: The French garrison at Fort Niagara, under the command of Pierre Pouchot, fell to British and native forces under the command of Sir William Johnson.

1791: Robespierre expelled all Jacobins that were opposed to the principles of the French Revolution.

1799: Napoleon gained his last victory during his occupation of Egypt, defeating the Ottoman Turks (listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire) at the Battle of Aboukir.

1918: On Mount Scopus in Jerusalem, the cornerstone for Hebrew University was laid by Dr. Chaim Weizmann. Dr. Weizmann was later elected as the first President of the present-day state of Israel.

1922: The British mandate over Palestine was approved by the League of Nations (listen to our Sermon The Balfour Declaration).

1943: During the Second World War (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars), Operation Gomorrah began. British and Canadian warplanes bombed Hamburg, Germany by night, while U.S. bombers did so by day. The bombings killed over 30,000 people and destroyed nearly 300,000 buildings.

1946: The U.S. conducted the first underwater test of an atomic bomb, off Bikini Atoll in the Pacific.

1967: French President Charles de Gaulle, while visiting Montreal, Canada, made a speech that ended with "Vive le Quebec libre" ("Long live free Quebec" - a meddling encouragement for the province of Quebec to leave Canada) for which he was promptly rebuked by Canadian Prime Minister Lester Pearson and cut short his visit.

1969: After completing the first manned moon landing, Apollo 11 returned to earth with a splash-down in the Pacific Ocean.

1977: The Libyan-Egyptian War ended after 4 days.

1990: Prior to their invasion, Iraqi military forces began massing on the Kuwait-Iraq border.

2001: Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, the former Tsar of Bulgaria, was sworn in as Prime Minister of Bulgaria. He thereby became the first king in history to regain political authority through democratic election to a different office.





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Copyright © Wayne Blank