Summary: A message on intercessory prayer.
Don’t Let God Alone ! 32:1-14
I. The Shame Of Impatience. V1
"And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down........"
Delay is something that we don’t like. We want it, and we want it now ! Actually we wanted it 10 minutes ago !
If patience is a virtue, then impatience must be a vice. Or it least it can be. In the case of the children of Israel, and the events which unfold it definitely was.
How many times has your impatience got you in trouble ? Have you ever made a wrong choice because of impatience ? Ever jumped into something in a moment of impatience.
Joke: The photographer for a national magazine was assigned to get photos of a great forest fire. Smoke at the scene was too thick to get any good shots, so he frantically called his home office to hire a plane.
"It will be waiting for you at the airport!", he was assured by his editor.
As soon as he got to the small rural airport, sure enough, a plane was warming up near the runway. He jumped in with his equipment and yelled, "Let’s go! Let’s go!" The pilot swung the plane into the wind and they were soon in the air.
"Fly over the north side of the fire," said the photographer, "and make three or four low level passes."
"Why?" asked the pilot.
"Because I’m going to take pictures! I’m a photographer, and photographers take pictures!" said the photographer with great exasperation and impatience.
After a long pause, the pilot said, "You mean you’re not the instructor?"
In Exodus 24, God calls Moses to Mt. Sinai to receive the laws to govern the people ! Having waited in Egypt for 430 years for deliverance, one would think that 40 days, and 40 nights of waiting would be a breeze for the people. However, the people soon became fidgety, and that led to frustration.
When is he coming down ? How much longer do we have to wait for him ? God created the heavens, and the earth is 6 days......why is it taking him so long to do this ?
Now as Moses, and Joshua went up on Mt. Sinai, Aaron, and Hur were left in charge. If anyone had any questions, or problems, they were to approach Aaron, and Hur !
II. The Surrender To Insurrection. Vs 1-6
Impatience soon gives rise to insurrection ! The people rebel against God, and rebel against his leaders.
They demand that Aaron make them gods.
Rather than taking a stand, and trying to reason with the people.........Aaron folds under the pressure !
Later on when Moses would confront Aaron he asks in Ch 32:21 ......"What did this people unto thee, that thou hast brought so great a sin upon them ?"
Did they harass you, beat you, threaten to kill you ?
Aaron’s response........V22 ......."thou knowest the people, that they are set on mischief."
Aaron is recalling what took place a few weeks earlier at Rephidim when the people were ready to stone Moses, and him because they were thirsty !
The word "mischief" means "bad or evil"
Here’s what Aaron’s problem was.......he didn’t want to have any problems, he wanted to stay away from conflict, and he wanted to make everyone happy !
It also didn’t help that he had a backbone like a jellyfish !
Pressure, and influence are truly powerful forces, but we are the children of God. We are to be the light of the world, and the salt of the earth ! We must have enough intestinal fortitude, gunction, and spiritual backbone to take a stand, and not compromise what is right !
III. The Sin Of Idolatry. Vs 3-6
It seems that without much convincing at all that Aaron gives in to their request.
He instructs them to give him their golden earrings. Having rec’d them, Aaron melts the gold, and molds it into a golden calf. He then boldly pronounces to the congregation that this is the god which brought them up out of the land of Egypt.
Why a golden calf ? It was the image of one of the Egyptian gods !
Oh what people will believe, and follow ! This was the image of one of the gods of those who held them in captivity for 430 years, yet they now freely embrace it as their own god !
Aaron has now made a idol so that the people that he has been entrusted with can worship, but he makes matters worse by building a altar to the idol, and declaring that tomorrow would be a feast to the LORD.
And sure enough on the next day, they rose up early, offered burnt offerings, and peace offerings, and had a big party.