The Golden Calf

32 When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain,(A) they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods[a] who will go before(B) us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.”(C)

Aaron answered them, “Take off the gold earrings(D) that your wives, your sons and your daughters are wearing, and bring them to me.” So all the people took off their earrings and brought them to Aaron. He took what they handed him and made it into an idol(E) cast in the shape of a calf,(F) fashioning it with a tool. Then they said, “These are your gods,[b](G) Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.”(H)

When Aaron saw this, he built an altar in front of the calf and announced, “Tomorrow there will be a festival(I) to the Lord.” So the next day the people rose early and sacrificed burnt offerings and presented fellowship offerings.(J) Afterward they sat down to eat and drink(K) and got up to indulge in revelry.(L)

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go down, because your people, whom you brought up out of Egypt,(M) have become corrupt.(N) They have been quick to turn away(O) from what I commanded them and have made themselves an idol(P) cast in the shape of a calf.(Q) They have bowed down to it and sacrificed(R) to it and have said, ‘These are your gods, Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.’(S)

“I have seen these people,” the Lord said to Moses, “and they are a stiff-necked(T) people. 10 Now leave me alone(U) so that my anger may burn against them and that I may destroy(V) them. Then I will make you into a great nation.”(W)

11 But Moses sought the favor(X) of the Lord his God. “Lord,” he said, “why should your anger burn against your people, whom you brought out of Egypt with great power and a mighty hand?(Y) 12 Why should the Egyptians say, ‘It was with evil intent that he brought them out, to kill them in the mountains and to wipe them off the face of the earth’?(Z) Turn from your fierce anger; relent and do not bring disaster(AA) on your people. 13 Remember(AB) your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel, to whom you swore by your own self:(AC) ‘I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars(AD) in the sky and I will give your descendants all this land(AE) I promised them, and it will be their inheritance forever.’” 14 Then the Lord relented(AF) and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened.

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Footnotes

  1. Exodus 32:1 Or a god; also in verses 23 and 31
  2. Exodus 32:4 Or This is your god; also in verse 8

Psalm 103

Of David.

Praise the Lord,(A) my soul;(B)
    all my inmost being, praise his holy name.(C)
Praise the Lord,(D) my soul,
    and forget not(E) all his benefits—
who forgives all your sins(F)
    and heals(G) all your diseases,
who redeems your life(H) from the pit
    and crowns you with love and compassion,(I)
who satisfies(J) your desires with good things
    so that your youth is renewed(K) like the eagle’s.(L)

The Lord works righteousness(M)
    and justice for all the oppressed.(N)

He made known(O) his ways(P) to Moses,
    his deeds(Q) to the people of Israel:
The Lord is compassionate and gracious,(R)
    slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
    nor will he harbor his anger forever;(S)
10 he does not treat us as our sins deserve(T)
    or repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
    so great is his love(U) for those who fear him;(V)
12 as far as the east is from the west,
    so far has he removed our transgressions(W) from us.

13 As a father has compassion(X) on his children,
    so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;
14 for he knows how we are formed,(Y)
    he remembers that we are dust.(Z)
15 The life of mortals is like grass,(AA)
    they flourish like a flower(AB) of the field;
16 the wind blows(AC) over it and it is gone,
    and its place(AD) remembers it no more.
17 But from everlasting to everlasting
    the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
    and his righteousness with their children’s children(AE)
18 with those who keep his covenant(AF)
    and remember(AG) to obey his precepts.(AH)

19 The Lord has established his throne(AI) in heaven,
    and his kingdom rules(AJ) over all.

20 Praise the Lord,(AK) you his angels,(AL)
    you mighty ones(AM) who do his bidding,(AN)
    who obey his word.
21 Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts,(AO)
    you his servants(AP) who do his will.
22 Praise the Lord, all his works(AQ)
    everywhere in his dominion.

Praise the Lord, my soul.(AR)