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Exodus 32-33

The Gold Calf

32 When the people saw that Moses delayed in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said to him, “Come, make us a god[a] who will go before us because this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt—we don’t know what has happened to him!”

Then Aaron replied to them, “Take off the gold rings that are on the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters and bring them to me.” So all the people took off the gold rings that were on their ears and brought them to Aaron. He took the gold from their hands, fashioned it with an engraving tool, and made it into an image of a calf.

Then they said, “Israel, this is your God,[b] who brought you up from the land of Egypt!”

When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it; then he made an announcement: “There will be a festival to the Lord tomorrow.” Early the next morning they arose, offered burnt offerings, and presented fellowship offerings. The people sat down to eat and drink, then got up to play.

The Lord spoke to Moses: “Go down at once! For your people you brought up from the land of Egypt have acted corruptly. They have quickly turned from the way I commanded them; they have made for themselves an image of a calf. They have bowed down to it, sacrificed to it, and said, ‘Israel, this is your God,[c] who brought you up from the land of Egypt.’” The Lord also said to Moses: “I have seen this people, and they are indeed a stiff-necked people. 10 Now leave Me alone, so that My anger can burn against them and I can destroy them. Then I will make you into a great nation.”

11 But Moses interceded with the Lord his God: “Lord, why does Your anger burn against Your people You brought out of the land of Egypt with great power and a strong hand? 12 Why should the Egyptians say, ‘He brought them out with an evil intent to kill them in the mountains and wipe them off the face of the earth’? Turn from Your great anger and relent concerning this disaster planned for Your people. 13 Remember Your servants Abraham, Isaac, and Israel—You swore to them by Your very self and declared, ‘I will make your offspring as numerous as the stars of the sky and will give your offspring all this land that I have promised, and they will inherit it forever.’” 14 So the Lord relented concerning the disaster He said He would bring on His people.

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

17 When Joshua heard the sound of the people as they shouted, he said to Moses, “There is a sound of war in the camp.”

18 But Moses replied:

It’s not the sound of a victory cry
and not the sound of a cry of defeat;
I hear the sound of singing!

19 As he approached the camp and saw the calf and the dancing, Moses became enraged and threw the tablets out of his hands, smashing them at the base of the mountain. 20 Then he took the calf they had made, burned it up, and ground it to powder. He scattered the powder over the surface of the water and forced the Israelites to drink the water.

21 Then Moses asked Aaron, “What did these people do to you that you have led them into such a grave sin?”

22 “Don’t be enraged, my lord,” Aaron replied. “You yourself know that the people are intent on evil. 23 They said to me, ‘Make us a god[d] who will go before us because this Moses, the man who brought us up from the land of Egypt—we don’t know what has happened to him!’ 24 So I said to them, ‘Whoever has gold, take it off,’ and they gave it to me. When I threw it into the fire, out came this calf!”

25 Moses saw that the people were out of control, for Aaron had let them get out of control, resulting in weakness before their enemies.[e] 26 And Moses stood at the camp’s entrance and said, “Whoever is for the Lord, come to me.” And all the Levites gathered around him. 27 He told them, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says, ‘Every man fasten his sword to his side; go back and forth through the camp from entrance to entrance, and each of you kill his brother, his friend, and his neighbor.’” 28 The Levites did as Moses commanded, and about 3,000 men fell dead that day among the people. 29 Afterward Moses said, “Today you have been dedicated[f] to the Lord, since each man went against his son and his brother. Therefore you have brought a blessing on yourselves today.”

30 The following day Moses said to the people, “You have committed a grave sin. Now I will go up to the Lord; perhaps I will be able to atone for your sin.”

31 So Moses returned to the Lord and said, “Oh, these people have committed a grave sin; they have made a god of gold for themselves. 32 Now if You would only forgive their sin. But if not, please erase me from the book You have written.”

33 The Lord replied to Moses: “I will erase whoever has sinned against Me from My book. 34 Now go, lead the people to the place I told you about; see, My angel will go before you. But on the day I settle accounts, I will hold them accountable for their sin.” 35 And the Lord inflicted a plague on the people for what they did with the calf Aaron had made.

The Tent Outside the Camp

33 The Lord spoke to Moses: “Go, leave here, you and the people you brought up from the land of Egypt, to the land I promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying: I will give it to your offspring. I will send an angel ahead of you and will drive out the Canaanites, Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites,[g] Hivites, and Jebusites. Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you because you are a stiff-necked people; otherwise, I might destroy you on the way.” When the people heard this bad news, they mourned and didn’t put on their jewelry.

For the Lord said to Moses: “Tell the Israelites: You are a stiff-necked people. If I went with you for a single moment, I would destroy you. Now take off your jewelry, and I will decide what to do with you.” So the Israelites remained stripped of their jewelry from Mount Horeb onward.

Now Moses took a tent and set it up outside the camp, far away from the camp; he called it the tent of meeting. Anyone who wanted to consult the Lord would go to the tent of meeting that was outside the camp. Whenever Moses went out to the tent, all the people would stand up, each one at the door of his tent, and they would watch Moses until he entered the tent. When Moses entered the tent, the pillar of cloud would come down and remain at the entrance to the tent, and the Lord would speak with Moses. 10 As all the people saw the pillar of cloud remaining at the entrance to the tent, they would stand up, then bow in worship, each one at the door of his tent. 11 The Lord spoke with Moses face to face, just as a man speaks with his friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his assistant, the young man Joshua son of Nun, would not leave the inside of the tent.

The Lord’s Glory

12 Moses said to the Lord, “Look, You have told me, ‘Lead this people up,’ but You have not let me know whom You will send with me. You said, ‘I know you by name, and you have also found favor in My sight.’ 13 Now if I have indeed found favor in Your sight, please teach me Your ways, and I will know You and find favor in Your sight. Now consider that this nation is Your people.”

14 Then He replied, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

15 “If Your presence does not go,” Moses responded to Him, “don’t make us go up from here. 16 How will it be known that I and Your people have found favor in Your sight unless You go with us? I and Your people will be distinguished by this from all the other people on the face of the earth.”

17 The Lord answered Moses, “I will do this very thing you have asked, for you have found favor in My sight, and I know you by name.”

18 Then Moses said, “Please, let me see Your glory.”

19 He said, “I will cause all My goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim the name Yahweh before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.” 20 But He answered, “You cannot see My face, for no one can see Me and live.” 21 The Lord said, “Here is a place near Me. You are to stand on the rock, 22 and when My glory passes by, I will put you in the crevice of the rock and cover you with My hand until I have passed by. 23 Then I will take My hand away, and you will see My back, but My face will not be seen.”

Footnotes:

  1. Exodus 32:1 Or us gods
  2. Exodus 32:4 Or Israel, this is your god, or Israel, these are your gods
  3. Exodus 32:8 Or Israel, this is your god, or Israel, these are your gods
  4. Exodus 32:23 Or us gods
  5. Exodus 32:25 Hb obscure; or resulting in derision
  6. Exodus 32:29 Text emended; MT reads Today dedicate yourselves; LXX, Vg read Today you have dedicated yourselves
  7. Exodus 33:2 Sam, LXX add Girgashites
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Matthew 26:69-27:14

Peter Denies His Lord

69 Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant approached him and she said, “You were with Jesus the Galilean too.”

70 But he denied it in front of everyone: “I don’t know what you’re talking about!”

71 When he had gone out to the gateway, another woman saw him and told those who were there, “This man was with Jesus the Nazarene!”

72 And again he denied it with an oath, “I don’t know the man!”

73 After a little while those standing there approached and said to Peter, “You certainly are one of them, since even your accent[a] gives you away.”

74 Then he started to curse[b] and to swear with an oath, “I do not know the man!” Immediately a rooster crowed, 75 and Peter remembered the words Jesus had spoken, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.

Jesus Handed Over to Pilate

27 When daybreak came, all the chief priests and the elders of the people plotted against Jesus to put Him to death. After tying Him up, they led Him away and handed Him over to Pilate,[c] the governor.

Judas Hangs Himself

Then Judas, His betrayer, seeing that He had been condemned, was full of remorse and returned the 30 pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders. “I have sinned by betraying innocent blood,” he said.

“What’s that to us?” they said. “See to it yourself!”

So he threw the silver into the sanctuary and departed. Then he went and hanged himself.

The chief priests took the silver and said, “It’s not lawful to put it into the temple treasury,[d] since it is blood money.”[e] So they conferred together and bought the potter’s field with it as a burial place for foreigners. Therefore that field has been called “Blood Field” to this day. Then what was spoken through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled:

They took the 30 pieces of silver, the price of Him whose price was set by the Israelites, 10 and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.[f]

Jesus Faces the Governor

11 Now Jesus stood before the governor. “Are You the King of the Jews?” the governor asked Him.

Jesus answered, “You have said it.”[g] 12 And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He didn’t answer.

13 Then Pilate said to Him, “Don’t You hear how much they are testifying against You?” 14 But He didn’t answer him on even one charge, so that the governor was greatly amazed.

Footnotes:

  1. Matthew 26:73 Or speech
  2. Matthew 26:74 To call down curses on himself if what he said weren’t true
  3. Matthew 27:2 Other mss read Pontius Pilate
  4. Matthew 27:6 See Mk 7:11 where the same Gk word (Corban) means a gift pledged to the temple.
  5. Matthew 27:6 Lit the price of blood
  6. Matthew 27:10 Jr 32:6-9; Zch 11:12-13
  7. Matthew 27:11 Or That is true, an affirmative oath; Mt 26:64; Mk 15:2
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Psalm 33:1-11

Psalm 33

Praise to the Creator

Rejoice in the Lord, you righteous ones;
praise from the upright is beautiful.
Praise the Lord with the lyre;
make music to Him with a ten-stringed harp.
Sing a new song to Him;
play skillfully on the strings, with a joyful shout.

For the word of the Lord is right,
and all His work is trustworthy.
He loves righteousness and justice;
the earth is full of the Lord’s unfailing love.

The heavens were made by the word of the Lord,
and all the stars, by the breath of His mouth.
He gathers the waters of the sea into a heap;[a]
He puts the depths into storehouses.
Let the whole earth tremble before the Lord;
let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
For He spoke, and it came into being;
He commanded, and it came into existence.

10 The Lord frustrates the counsel of the nations;
He thwarts the plans of the peoples.
11 The counsel of the Lord stands forever,
the plans of His heart from generation to generation.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 33:7 LXX, Tg, Syr, Vg, Jer read sea as in a bottle
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Proverbs 8:33-36

33 Listen to instruction and be wise;
don’t ignore it.
34 Anyone who listens to me is happy,
watching at my doors every day,
waiting by the posts of my doorway.
35 For the one who finds me finds life
and obtains favor from the Lord,
36 but the one who misses me[a] harms himself;
all who hate me love death.”

Footnotes:

  1. Proverbs 8:36 Or who sins against me
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