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Exodus 30:11-34:35 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

11 The Lord also spoke to Moses, saying, 12 “When you take a [a]census of the sons of Israel [b]to number them, then each one of them shall give a ransom for [c]himself to the Lord, when you [d]number them, so that there will be no plague among them when you [e]number them. 13 This is what everyone who [f]is numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary (the shekel is twenty gerahs), half a shekel as a [g]contribution to the Lord. 14 Everyone who [h]is numbered, from twenty years old and over, shall give the [i]contribution to the Lord. 15 The rich shall not pay more and the poor shall not pay less than the half shekel, when you give the [j]contribution to the Lord to make atonement for [k]yourselves. 16 You shall take the atonement money from the sons of Israel and shall give it for the service of the tent of meeting, that it may be a memorial for the sons of Israel before the Lord, to make atonement for [l]yourselves.”

17 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 18 “You shall also make a laver of [m]bronze, with its base of bronze, for washing; and you shall put it between the tent of meeting and the altar, and you shall put water in it. 19 Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet from it; 20 when they enter the tent of meeting, they shall wash with water, so that they will not die; or when they approach the altar to minister, by offering up in smoke a fire sacrifice to the Lord. 21 So they shall wash their hands and their feet, so that they will not die; and it shall be a perpetual statute for them, for [n]Aaron and his [o]descendants throughout their generations.”

The Anointing Oil

22 Moreover, the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 23 “Take also for yourself the finest of spices: of flowing myrrh five hundred shekels, and of fragrant cinnamon half as much, two hundred and fifty, and of fragrant cane two hundred and fifty, 24 and of cassia five hundred, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, and of olive oil a hin. 25 You shall make [p]of these a holy anointing oil, a perfume mixture, the work of a perfumer; it shall be a holy anointing oil. 26 With it you shall anoint the tent of meeting and the ark of the testimony, 27 and the table and all its utensils, and the lampstand and its utensils, and the altar of incense, 28 and the altar of burnt offering and all its utensils, and the laver and its stand. 29 You shall also consecrate them, that they may be most holy; whatever touches them shall be holy. 30 You shall anoint Aaron and his sons, and consecrate them, that they may minister as priests to Me. 31 You shall speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘This shall be a holy anointing oil to Me throughout your generations. 32 It shall not be poured on [q]anyone’s body, nor shall you make any like it in [r]the same proportions; it is holy, and it shall be holy to you. 33 Whoever shall mix any like it or whoever puts any of it on a [s]layman [t]shall be cut off from his people.’”

The Incense

34 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Take for yourself spices, stacte and onycha and galbanum, spices with pure frankincense; there shall be an equal part of each. 35 With it you shall make incense, a perfume, the work of a perfumer, salted, pure, and holy. 36 You shall beat some of it very fine, and put part of it before the testimony in the tent of meeting where I will meet with you; it shall be most holy to you. 37 The incense which you shall make, you shall not make in [u]the same proportions for yourselves; it shall be holy to you for the Lord. 38 Whoever shall make any like it, to [v]use as perfume, [w]shall be cut off from his people.”

The Skilled Craftsmen

31 Now the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “See, I have called by name Bezalel, the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of [x]craftsmanship, to [y]make artistic designs for work in gold, in silver, and in [z]bronze, and in the cutting of stones [aa]for settings, and in the carving of wood, that he may work in all kinds of [ab]craftsmanship. And behold, I Myself have [ac]appointed with him Oholiab, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan; and in the hearts of all who are [ad]skillful I have put [ae]skill, that they may make all that I have commanded you: the tent of meeting, and the ark of testimony, and the [af]mercy seat upon it, and all the furniture of the tent, the table also and its [ag]utensils, and the pure gold lampstand with all its [ah]utensils, and the altar of incense, the altar of burnt offering also with all its [ai]utensils, and the laver and its stand, 10 the [aj]woven garments as well, and the holy garments for Aaron the priest, and the garments of his sons, with which to [ak]carry on their priesthood; 11 the anointing oil also, and the fragrant incense for the holy place, they are to make them according to all that I have commanded you.”

The Sign of the Sabbath

12 The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 13 “But as for you, speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘You shall surely observe My sabbaths; for this is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the Lord who sanctifies you. 14 Therefore you are to observe the sabbath, for it is holy to you. Everyone who profanes it shall surely be put to death; for whoever does any work on it, that person shall be cut off from among his people. 15 For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day there is a sabbath of complete rest, holy to the Lord; whoever does any work on the sabbath day shall surely be put to death. 16 So the sons of Israel shall observe the sabbath, to [al]celebrate the sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant.’ 17 It is a sign between Me and the sons of Israel forever; for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, but on the seventh day He ceased from labor, and was refreshed.”

18 When He had finished speaking with him upon Mount Sinai, He gave Moses the two tablets of the testimony, tablets of stone, written by the finger of God.

The Golden Calf

32 Now when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people assembled about Aaron and said to him, “Come, make us [am]a god who will go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.” Aaron said to them, “Tear off the gold rings which are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.” Then all the people tore off the gold rings which were in their ears and brought them to Aaron. He took this from their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool and made it into a molten calf; and they said, “[an]This is your god, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt.” Now when Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord.” So the next day they rose early and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play.

Then the Lord spoke to Moses, “Go [ao]down at once, for your people, whom you brought up from the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves. They have quickly turned aside from the way which I commanded them. They have made for themselves a molten calf, and have worshiped it and have sacrificed to it and said, ‘[ap]This is your god, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt!’” The Lord said to Moses, “I have seen this people, and behold, they are [aq]an obstinate people. 10 Now then let Me alone, that My anger may burn against them and that I may destroy them; and I will make of you a great nation.”

Moses’ Entreaty

11 Then Moses entreated the Lord his God, and said, “O Lord, why does Your anger burn against Your people whom You have brought out from the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand? 12 Why should the Egyptians speak, saying, ‘With evil intent He brought them out to kill them in the mountains and to destroy them from the face of the earth’? Turn from Your burning anger and change Your mind about doing harm to Your people. 13 Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, Your servants to whom You swore by Yourself, and said to them, ‘I will multiply your [ar]descendants as the stars of the heavens, and all this land of which I have spoken I will give to your [as]descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.’” 14 So the Lord changed His mind about the harm which He said He would do to His people.

15 Then Moses turned and went down from the mountain with the two tablets of the testimony in his hand, tablets which were written on both [at]sides; they were written on one side and the other. 16 The tablets were God’s work, and the writing was God’s writing engraved on the tablets. 17 Now when Joshua heard the sound of the people [au]as they shouted, he said to Moses, “There is a sound of war in the camp.” 18 But he said,

“It is not the sound of the cry of triumph,
Nor is it the sound of the cry of defeat;
But the sound of singing I hear.”

Moses’ Anger

19 It came about, as soon as [av]Moses came near the camp, that he saw the calf and the dancing; and Moses’ anger burned, and he threw the tablets from his hands and shattered them [aw]at the foot of the mountain. 20 He took the calf which they had made and burned it with fire, and ground it to powder, and scattered it over the surface of the water and made the sons of Israel drink it.

21 Then Moses said to Aaron, “What did this people do to you, that you have brought such great sin upon them?” 22 Aaron said, “Do not let the anger of my lord burn; you know the people yourself, that they are [ax]prone to evil. 23 For they said to me, ‘Make [ay]a god for us who will go before us; for this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.’ 24 I said to them, ‘Whoever has any gold, let them tear it off.’ So they gave it to me, and I threw it into the fire, and out came this calf.”

25 Now when Moses saw that the people were [az]out of control—for Aaron had let them [ba]get out of control to be a derision among [bb]their enemies— 26 then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, “Whoever is for the Lord, come to me!” And all the sons of Levi gathered together to him. 27 He said to them, “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, ‘Every man of you put his sword upon his thigh, and go back and forth from gate to gate in the camp, and kill every man his brother, and every man his friend, and every man his [bc]neighbor.’” 28 So the sons of Levi did [bd]as Moses instructed, and about three thousand men of the people fell that day. 29 Then Moses said, “[be]Dedicate yourselves today to the Lord—for every man has been against his son and against his brother—in order that He may bestow a blessing upon you today.”

30 On the next day Moses said to the people, “You yourselves have [bf]committed a great sin; and now I am going up to the Lord, perhaps I can make atonement for your sin.” 31 Then Moses returned to the Lord, and said, “Alas, this people has [bg]committed a great sin, and they have made [bh]a god of gold for themselves. 32 But now, if You will, forgive their sin—and if not, please blot me out from Your book which You have written!” 33 The Lord said to Moses, “Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him out of My book. 34 But go now, lead the people where I told you. Behold, My angel shall go before you; nevertheless in the day when I [bi]punish, I will [bj]punish them for their sin.” 35 Then the Lord smote the people, because of what they did with the calf which Aaron had made.

The Journey Resumed

33 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, “Depart, go up from here, you and the people whom you have brought up from the land of Egypt, to the land of which I swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying, ‘To your [bk]descendants I will give it.’ I will send an angel before you and I will drive out the Canaanite, the Amorite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite. Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey; for I will not go up in your midst, because you are [bl]an obstinate people, and I might destroy you on the way.”

When the people heard this [bm]sad word, they went into mourning, and none of them put on his ornaments. For the Lord had said to Moses, “Say to the sons of Israel, ‘You are [bn]an obstinate people; should I go up in your midst for one moment, I would destroy you. Now therefore, put off your ornaments from you, that I may know what I shall do with you.’” So the sons of Israel stripped themselves of their ornaments, from Mount Horeb onward.

Now Moses used to take the tent and pitch it outside the camp, a good distance from the camp, and he called it the tent of meeting. And everyone who sought the Lord would go out to the tent of meeting which was outside the camp. And it came about, whenever Moses went out to the tent, that all the people would arise and stand, each at the entrance of his tent, and gaze after Moses until he entered the tent. Whenever Moses entered the tent, the pillar of cloud would descend and stand at the entrance of the tent; and [bo]the Lord would speak with Moses. 10 When all the people saw the pillar of cloud standing at the entrance of the tent, all the people would arise and worship, each at the entrance of his tent. 11 Thus the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, just as a man speaks to his friend. When [bp]Moses returned to the camp, his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, would not depart from the tent.

Moses Intercedes

12 Then Moses said to the Lord, “See, You say to me, ‘Bring up this people!’ But You Yourself have not let me know whom You will send with me. Moreover, You have said, ‘I have known you by name, and you have also found favor in My sight.’ 13 Now therefore, I pray You, if I have found favor in Your sight, let me know Your ways that I may know You, so that I may find favor in Your sight. Consider too, that this nation is Your people.” 14 And He said, “My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest.” 15 Then he said to Him, “If Your presence does not go with us, do not lead us up from here. 16 For how then can it be known that I have found favor in Your sight, I and Your people? Is it not by Your going with us, so that we, I and Your people, may be distinguished from all the other people who are upon the face of the [bq]earth?”

17 The Lord said to Moses, “I will also do this thing of which you have spoken; for you have found favor in My sight and I have known you by name.” 18 Then [br]Moses said, “I pray You, show me Your glory!” 19 And He said, “I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the Lord before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion.” 20 But He said, “You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me and live!” 21 Then the Lord said, “Behold, there is a place [bs]by Me, and you shall stand there on the rock; 22 and it will come about, while My glory is passing by, that I will put you in the cleft of the rock and cover you with My hand until I have passed by. 23 Then I will take My hand away and you shall see My back, but My face shall not be seen.”

The Two Tablets Replaced

34 Now the Lord said to Moses, “Cut out for yourself two stone tablets like the former ones, and I will write on the tablets the words that were on the former tablets which you shattered. So be ready by morning, and come up in the morning to Mount Sinai, and [bt]present yourself there to Me on the top of the mountain. No man is to come up with you, nor let any man be seen [bu]anywhere on the mountain; even the flocks and the herds may not graze in front of that mountain.” So he cut out two stone tablets like the former ones, and Moses rose up early in the morning and went up to Mount Sinai, as the Lord had commanded him, and he took two stone tablets in his hand. The Lord descended in the cloud and stood there with him as [bv]he called upon the name of the Lord. Then the Lord passed by in front of him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and [bw]truth; who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations.” Moses made haste [bx]to bow low toward the earth and worship. He said, “If now I have found favor in Your sight, O Lord, I pray, let the Lord go along in our midst, even though [by]the people are so obstinate, and pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us as Your own [bz]possession.”

The Covenant Renewed

10 Then [ca]God said, “Behold, I am going to make a covenant. Before all your people I will perform miracles which have not been [cb]produced in all the earth nor among any of the nations; and all the people [cc]among whom you live will see the working of the Lord, for it is a fearful thing that I am going to perform with you.

11 [cd]Be sure to observe what I am commanding you this day: behold, I am going to drive out the Amorite before you, and the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Hivite and the Jebusite. 12 Watch yourself that you make no covenant with the inhabitants of the land into which you are going, or it will become a snare in your midst. 13 But rather, you are to tear down their altars and smash their sacred pillars and cut down their [ce]Asherim 14 —for you shall not worship any other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God— 15 otherwise you might make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land and they would play the harlot with their gods and sacrifice to their gods, and someone might invite you [cf]to eat of his sacrifice, 16 and you might take some of his daughters for your sons, and his daughters might play the harlot with their gods and cause your sons also to play the harlot with their gods. 17 You shall make for yourself no molten gods.

18 “You shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread. For seven days you are to eat unleavened bread, [cg]as I commanded you, at the appointed time in the month of Abib, for in the month of Abib you came out of Egypt.

19 The first offspring from every womb belongs to Me, and all your male livestock, the first offspring from [ch]cattle and sheep. 20 You shall redeem with a lamb the [ci]first offspring from a donkey; and if you do not redeem it, then you shall break its neck. You shall redeem all the firstborn of your sons. [cj]None shall appear before Me empty-handed.

21 “You shall work six days, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during plowing time and harvest you shall rest. 22 You shall celebrate the Feast of Weeks, that is, the first fruits of the wheat harvest, and the Feast of Ingathering at the turn of the year. 23 Three times a year all your males are to appear before the Lord [ck]God, the God of Israel. 24 For I will [cl]drive out nations before you and enlarge your borders, and no man shall covet your land when you go up three times a year to appear before the Lord your God.

25 You shall not [cm]offer the blood of My sacrifice with leavened bread, nor is the sacrifice of the Feast of the Passover to [cn]be left over until morning.

26 “You shall bring the very first of the first fruits of your soil into the house of the Lord your God.

“You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk.”

27 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Write [co]down these words, for in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel.” 28 So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he did not eat bread or drink water. And [cp]he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten [cq]Commandments.

Moses’ Face Shines

29 It came about when Moses was coming down from Mount Sinai (and the two tablets of the testimony were in Moses’ hand as he was coming down from the mountain), that Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone because of his speaking with Him. 30 So when Aaron and all the sons of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone, and they were afraid to come near him. 31 Then Moses called to them, and Aaron and all the rulers in the congregation returned to him; and Moses spoke to them. 32 Afterward all the sons of Israel came near, and he commanded them to do everything that the Lord had spoken [cr]to him on Mount Sinai. 33 When Moses had finished speaking with them, he put a veil over his face. 34 But whenever Moses went in before the Lord to speak with Him, he would take off the veil until he came out; and whenever he came out and spoke to the sons of Israel what he had been commanded, 35 the sons of Israel would see the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses’ face shone. So Moses would replace the veil over his face until he went in to speak with Him.

Footnotes:

  1. Exodus 30:12 Lit sum
  2. Exodus 30:12 Lit for their being mustered
  3. Exodus 30:12 Lit his soul
  4. Exodus 30:12 Lit muster
  5. Exodus 30:12 Lit muster
  6. Exodus 30:13 Lit passes over to those who are mustered
  7. Exodus 30:13 Lit heave offering
  8. Exodus 30:14 V 13, note 1
  9. Exodus 30:14 Lit heave offering of the Lord
  10. Exodus 30:15 Lit heave offering of the Lord
  11. Exodus 30:15 Lit your souls
  12. Exodus 30:16 Lit your souls
  13. Exodus 30:18 Or copper
  14. Exodus 30:21 Lit him
  15. Exodus 30:21 Lit seed
  16. Exodus 30:25 Lit it
  17. Exodus 30:32 Lit the flesh of man
  18. Exodus 30:32 Lit its proportion
  19. Exodus 30:33 Lit stranger
  20. Exodus 30:33 Lit even he shall
  21. Exodus 30:37 Lit its proportion
  22. Exodus 30:38 Lit smell of it
  23. Exodus 30:38 Lit even he shall
  24. Exodus 31:3 Or workmanship
  25. Exodus 31:4 Lit devise devices
  26. Exodus 31:4 Or copper
  27. Exodus 31:5 Lit to fill in (for a setting)
  28. Exodus 31:5 Or workmanship
  29. Exodus 31:6 Lit given
  30. Exodus 31:6 Lit wise of heart
  31. Exodus 31:6 Lit wisdom
  32. Exodus 31:7 Lit propitiatory
  33. Exodus 31:8 Or vessels
  34. Exodus 31:8 Or vessels
  35. Exodus 31:9 Or vessels
  36. Exodus 31:10 Or service garments
  37. Exodus 31:10 Lit minister as priests
  38. Exodus 31:16 Lit do
  39. Exodus 32:1 Or gods
  40. Exodus 32:4 Or These are your gods
  41. Exodus 32:7 Lit go down
  42. Exodus 32:8 Or These are your gods
  43. Exodus 32:9 Or a stiff-necked
  44. Exodus 32:13 Lit seed
  45. Exodus 32:13 Lit seed
  46. Exodus 32:15 Lit their sides
  47. Exodus 32:17 Lit in its shouting
  48. Exodus 32:19 Lit he
  49. Exodus 32:19 Lit beneath
  50. Exodus 32:22 Lit in evil
  51. Exodus 32:23 Or gods
  52. Exodus 32:25 Lit let loose
  53. Exodus 32:25 Lit go loose
  54. Exodus 32:25 Lit those who rise against them
  55. Exodus 32:27 Or kin
  56. Exodus 32:28 Lit according to Moses’ word
  57. Exodus 32:29 Lit Fill your hand
  58. Exodus 32:30 Lit sinned
  59. Exodus 32:31 Lit sinned
  60. Exodus 32:31 Or gods
  61. Exodus 32:34 Lit visit
  62. Exodus 32:34 Lit visit their sin upon them
  63. Exodus 33:1 Lit seed
  64. Exodus 33:3 Lit a stiff-necked
  65. Exodus 33:4 Lit evil
  66. Exodus 33:5 Lit a stiff-necked
  67. Exodus 33:9 Lit He
  68. Exodus 33:11 Lit he
  69. Exodus 33:16 Lit ground
  70. Exodus 33:18 Lit he
  71. Exodus 33:21 Lit with
  72. Exodus 34:2 Or place yourself before
  73. Exodus 34:3 Lit on all
  74. Exodus 34:5 Or he called out with the name of the Lord
  75. Exodus 34:6 Or faithfulness
  76. Exodus 34:8 Lit and bowed...worshiped
  77. Exodus 34:9 Lit it is a people stiff-necked
  78. Exodus 34:9 Or inheritance
  79. Exodus 34:10 Lit He
  80. Exodus 34:10 Lit created
  81. Exodus 34:10 Lit in whose midst you are
  82. Exodus 34:11 Lit Observe for yourself
  83. Exodus 34:13 I.e. wooden symbols of a female deity
  84. Exodus 34:15 Lit and you eat
  85. Exodus 34:18 Or which
  86. Exodus 34:19 Or oxen
  87. Exodus 34:20 Lit first opening of
  88. Exodus 34:20 Lit They shall not
  89. Exodus 34:23 Heb YHWH, usually rendered Lord
  90. Exodus 34:24 Or dispossess
  91. Exodus 34:25 Lit slaughter
  92. Exodus 34:25 Lit remain overnight
  93. Exodus 34:27 Lit for yourself
  94. Exodus 34:28 Or He, i.e. The Lord
  95. Exodus 34:28 Lit Words
  96. Exodus 34:32 Lit with
New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

Exodus 30:11-34:35 New International Version (NIV)

Atonement Money

11 Then the Lord said to Moses, 12 “When you take a census of the Israelites to count them, each one must pay the Lord a ransom for his life at the time he is counted. Then no plague will come on them when you number them. 13 Each one who crosses over to those already counted is to give a half shekel,[a] according to the sanctuary shekel, which weighs twenty gerahs. This half shekel is an offering to the Lord. 14 All who cross over, those twenty years old or more, are to give an offering to the Lord. 15 The rich are not to give more than a half shekel and the poor are not to give less when you make the offering to the Lord to atone for your lives. 16 Receive the atonement money from the Israelites and use it for the service of the tent of meeting. It will be a memorial for the Israelites before the Lord, making atonement for your lives.”

Basin for Washing

17 Then the Lord said to Moses, 18 “Make a bronze basin, with its bronze stand, for washing. Place it between the tent of meeting and the altar, and put water in it. 19 Aaron and his sons are to wash their hands and feet with water from it. 20 Whenever they enter the tent of meeting, they shall wash with water so that they will not die. Also, when they approach the altar to minister by presenting a food offering to the Lord, 21 they shall wash their hands and feet so that they will not die. This is to be a lasting ordinance for Aaron and his descendants for the generations to come.”

Anointing Oil

22 Then the Lord said to Moses, 23 “Take the following fine spices: 500 shekels[b] of liquid myrrh, half as much (that is, 250 shekels) of fragrant cinnamon, 250 shekels[c] of fragrant calamus, 24 500 shekels of cassia—all according to the sanctuary shekel—and a hin[d] of olive oil. 25 Make these into a sacred anointing oil, a fragrant blend, the work of a perfumer. It will be the sacred anointing oil. 26 Then use it to anoint the tent of meeting, the ark of the covenant law, 27 the table and all its articles, the lampstand and its accessories, the altar of incense, 28 the altar of burnt offering and all its utensils, and the basin with its stand. 29 You shall consecrate them so they will be most holy, and whatever touches them will be holy.

30 “Anoint Aaron and his sons and consecrate them so they may serve me as priests. 31 Say to the Israelites, ‘This is to be my sacred anointing oil for the generations to come. 32 Do not pour it on anyone else’s body and do not make any other oil using the same formula. It is sacred, and you are to consider it sacred. 33 Whoever makes perfume like it and puts it on anyone other than a priest must be cut off from their people.’”

Incense

34 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Take fragrant spices—gum resin, onycha and galbanum—and pure frankincense, all in equal amounts, 35 and make a fragrant blend of incense, the work of a perfumer. It is to be salted and pure and sacred. 36 Grind some of it to powder and place it in front of the ark of the covenant law in the tent of meeting, where I will meet with you. It shall be most holy to you. 37 Do not make any incense with this formula for yourselves; consider it holy to the Lord. 38 Whoever makes incense like it to enjoy its fragrance must be cut off from their people.”

Bezalel and Oholiab

31 Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts. Moreover, I have appointed Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, to help him. Also I have given ability to all the skilled workers to make everything I have commanded you: the tent of meeting, the ark of the covenant law with the atonement cover on it, and all the other furnishings of the tent— the table and its articles, the pure gold lampstand and all its accessories, the altar of incense, the altar of burnt offering and all its utensils, the basin with its stand— 10 and also the woven garments, both the sacred garments for Aaron the priest and the garments for his sons when they serve as priests, 11 and the anointing oil and fragrant incense for the Holy Place. They are to make them just as I commanded you.”

The Sabbath

12 Then the Lord said to Moses, 13 “Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the Lord, who makes you holy.

14 “‘Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you. Anyone who desecrates it is to be put to death; those who do any work on that day must be cut off from their people. 15 For six days work is to be done, but the seventh day is a day of sabbath rest, holy to the Lord. Whoever does any work on the Sabbath day is to be put to death. 16 The Israelites are to observe the Sabbath, celebrating it for the generations to come as a lasting covenant. 17 It will be a sign between me and the Israelites forever, for in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed.’”

18 When the Lord finished speaking to Moses on Mount Sinai, he gave him the two tablets of the covenant law, the tablets of stone inscribed by the finger of God.

The Golden Calf

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

Aaron answered them, “Take off the gold earrings 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 cast in the shape of a calf, fashioning it with a tool. Then they said, “These are your gods,[f] Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.”

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

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

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

11 But Moses sought the favor 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? 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’? Turn from your fierce anger; relent and do not bring disaster on your people. 13 Remember your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel, to whom you swore by your own self: ‘I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and I will give your descendants all this land I promised them, and it will be their inheritance forever.’” 14 Then the Lord relented and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened.

15 Moses turned and went down the mountain with the two tablets of the covenant law in his hands. They were inscribed on both sides, front and back. 16 The tablets were the work of God; the writing was the writing of God, engraved on the tablets.

17 When Joshua heard the noise of the people shouting, he said to Moses, “There is the sound of war in the camp.”

18 Moses replied:

“It is not the sound of victory,
    it is not the sound of defeat;
    it is the sound of singing that I hear.”

19 When Moses approached the camp and saw the calf and the dancing, his anger burned and he threw the tablets out of his hands, breaking them to pieces at the foot of the mountain. 20 And he took the calf the people had made and burned it in the fire; then he ground it to powder, scattered it on the water and made the Israelites drink it.

21 He said to Aaron, “What did these people do to you, that you led them into such great sin?”

22 “Do not be angry, my lord,” Aaron answered. “You know how prone these people are to evil. 23 They said to me, ‘Make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.’ 24 So I told them, ‘Whoever has any gold jewelry, take it off.’ Then they gave me the gold, and I threw it into the fire, and out came this calf!”

25 Moses saw that the people were running wild and that Aaron had let them get out of control and so become a laughingstock to their enemies. 26 So he stood at the entrance to the camp and said, “Whoever is for the Lord, come to me.” And all the Levites rallied to him.

27 Then he said to them, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Each man strap a sword to his side. Go back and forth through the camp from one end to the other, each killing his brother and friend and neighbor.’” 28 The Levites did as Moses commanded, and that day about three thousand of the people died. 29 Then Moses said, “You have been set apart to the Lord today, for you were against your own sons and brothers, and he has blessed you this day.”

30 The next day Moses said to the people, “You have committed a great sin. But now I will go up to the Lord; perhaps I can make atonement for your sin.”

31 So Moses went back to the Lord and said, “Oh, what a great sin these people have committed! They have made themselves gods of gold. 32 But now, please forgive their sin—but if not, then blot me out of the book you have written.”

33 The Lord replied to Moses, “Whoever has sinned against me I will blot out of my book. 34 Now go, lead the people to the place I spoke of, and my angel will go before you. However, when the time comes for me to punish, I will punish them for their sin.”

35 And the Lord struck the people with a plague because of what they did with the calf Aaron had made.

33 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Leave this place, you and the people you brought up out of Egypt, and go up to the land I promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants.’ I will send an angel before you and drive out the Canaanites, Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. Go up to the land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you, because you are a stiff-necked people and I might destroy you on the way.”

When the people heard these distressing words, they began to mourn and no one put on any ornaments. For the Lord had said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites, ‘You are a stiff-necked people. If I were to go with you even for a moment, I might destroy you. Now take off your ornaments and I will decide what to do with you.’” So the Israelites stripped off their ornaments at Mount Horeb.

The Tent of Meeting

Now Moses used to take a tent and pitch it outside the camp some distance away, calling it the “tent of meeting.” Anyone inquiring of the Lord would go to the tent of meeting outside the camp. And whenever Moses went out to the tent, all the people rose and stood at the entrances to their tents, watching Moses until he entered the tent. As Moses went into the tent, the pillar of cloud would come down and stay at the entrance, while the Lord spoke with Moses. 10 Whenever the people saw the pillar of cloud standing at the entrance to the tent, they all stood and worshiped, each at the entrance to their tent. 11 The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent.

Moses and the Glory of the Lord

12 Moses said to the Lord, “You have been telling me, ‘Lead these people,’ but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. You have said, ‘I know you by name and you have found favor with me.’ 13 If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people.”

14 The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

15 Then Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. 16 How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?”

17 And the Lord said to Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”

18 Then Moses said, “Now show me your glory.”

19 And the Lord said, “I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the Lord, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 20 But,” he said, “you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live.”

21 Then the Lord said, “There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. 22 When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. 23 Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back; but my face must not be seen.”

The New Stone Tablets

34 The Lord said to Moses, “Chisel out two stone tablets like the first ones, and I will write on them the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. Be ready in the morning, and then come up on Mount Sinai. Present yourself to me there on top of the mountain. No one is to come with you or be seen anywhere on the mountain; not even the flocks and herds may graze in front of the mountain.”

So Moses chiseled out two stone tablets like the first ones and went up Mount Sinai early in the morning, as the Lord had commanded him; and he carried the two stone tablets in his hands. Then the Lord came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the Lord. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.”

Moses bowed to the ground at once and worshiped. “Lord,” he said, “if I have found favor in your eyes, then let the Lord go with us. Although this is a stiff-necked people, forgive our wickedness and our sin, and take us as your inheritance.”

10 Then the Lord said: “I am making a covenant with you. Before all your people I will do wonders never before done in any nation in all the world. The people you live among will see how awesome is the work that I, the Lord, will do for you. 11 Obey what I command you today. I will drive out before you the Amorites, Canaanites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. 12 Be careful not to make a treaty with those who live in the land where you are going, or they will be a snare among you. 13 Break down their altars, smash their sacred stones and cut down their Asherah poles.[g] 14 Do not worship any other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.

15 “Be careful not to make a treaty with those who live in the land; for when they prostitute themselves to their gods and sacrifice to them, they will invite you and you will eat their sacrifices. 16 And when you choose some of their daughters as wives for your sons and those daughters prostitute themselves to their gods, they will lead your sons to do the same.

17 “Do not make any idols.

18 “Celebrate the Festival of Unleavened Bread. For seven days eat bread made without yeast, as I commanded you. Do this at the appointed time in the month of Aviv, for in that month you came out of Egypt.

19 “The first offspring of every womb belongs to me, including all the firstborn males of your livestock, whether from herd or flock. 20 Redeem the firstborn donkey with a lamb, but if you do not redeem it, break its neck. Redeem all your firstborn sons.

“No one is to appear before me empty-handed.

21 “Six days you shall labor, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during the plowing season and harvest you must rest.

22 “Celebrate the Festival of Weeks with the firstfruits of the wheat harvest, and the Festival of Ingathering at the turn of the year.[h] 23 Three times a year all your men are to appear before the Sovereign Lord, the God of Israel. 24 I will drive out nations before you and enlarge your territory, and no one will covet your land when you go up three times each year to appear before the Lord your God.

25 “Do not offer the blood of a sacrifice to me along with anything containing yeast, and do not let any of the sacrifice from the Passover Festival remain until morning.

26 “Bring the best of the firstfruits of your soil to the house of the Lord your God.

“Do not cook a young goat in its mother’s milk.”

27 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Write down these words, for in accordance with these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel.” 28 Moses was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Commandments.

The Radiant Face of Moses

29 When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the covenant law in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the Lord. 30 When Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, his face was radiant, and they were afraid to come near him. 31 But Moses called to them; so Aaron and all the leaders of the community came back to him, and he spoke to them. 32 Afterward all the Israelites came near him, and he gave them all the commands the Lord had given him on Mount Sinai.

33 When Moses finished speaking to them, he put a veil over his face. 34 But whenever he entered the Lord’s presence to speak with him, he removed the veil until he came out. And when he came out and told the Israelites what he had been commanded, 35 they saw that his face was radiant. Then Moses would put the veil back over his face until he went in to speak with the Lord.

Footnotes:

  1. Exodus 30:13 That is, about 1/5 ounce or about 5.8 grams; also in verse 15
  2. Exodus 30:23 That is, about 12 1/2 pounds or about 5.8 kilograms; also in verse 24
  3. Exodus 30:23 That is, about 6 1/4 pounds or about 2.9 kilograms
  4. Exodus 30:24 That is, probably about 1 gallon or about 3.8 liters
  5. Exodus 32:1 Or a god; also in verses 23 and 31
  6. Exodus 32:4 Or This is your god; also in verse 8
  7. Exodus 34:13 That is, wooden symbols of the goddess Asherah
  8. Exodus 34:22 That is, in the autumn
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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