In The Beginning
In the beginning was the Word,
And the Word was with God,
And the Word was God.
John 1:1

Part IV

~ A Spoiled Wedding ~

* The Idolatry of the Bride *

      “When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, the people gathered against Aaron and said to him, ‘Come, make us a god who shall go before us, for that man Moses, who brought us from the land of Egypt—we do not know what has happened to him.’ Aaron said 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.’ And ail the people took off the gold rings that were in their ears and brought them to Aaron. This he took from them and cast in a mold (or fashioned it with a graving tool), and made it into a molten calf And they exclaimed, ‘This is your god, O Israel, who brought you out of the land of Egypt!’ When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it; and Aaron announced: Tomorrow shall be a festival of the LORD!’ Early next day, the people offered up burnt offerings and brought sacrifices of well-being; they sat down to eat and drink, and then rose to dance.
      “The LORD spoke to Moses, ‘Hurry down, for your people, whom you brought out of the land of Egypt, have acted basely. They have been quick to turn aside from the way that I enjoined upon them. They have made themselves a molten calf and bowed tow to it and sacrificed to it, saying: “This is your god, O Israel, who brought you out of the land of Egypt!’
      “The LORD further said to Moses, ‘I see that this is a stiff-necked people. Now let Me be, that My anger may blaze forth against them and that I may destroy them, and make of you a great nation.’ But Moses implored the LORD his God, saying, ‘Let not Your anger, O LORD, blaze forth against Your people, whom You delivered from the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand. Let not the Egyptians say, “It was with evil intent that He delivered them, only to kill them off in the mountains and annihilate them from the face of the earth.’ Turn from Your blazing anger, and renounce the plan to punish Your people. Remember Your servants, Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, how You swore to them by Your Self and said to them: I will make your offspring as numerous as the stars of heaven, and I will give toy our off spring this whole land of which I spoke, to possess forever.’ And the LORD renounced the punishment He had planned to bring upon His people.”
(Ex. 32:1-14)

* The Ketuvah is Broken *

      “Thereupon Moses turned and went down from the mountain bearing the Two tablets of the Pact, tablets inscribed on both their surfaces: they were inscribed on the one side and on the other. The tablets were God’s work, and the writing was God’s writing, incised upon the tablets. When Joshua heard the sound of the people in its boisterousness, he said to Moses, There is a cry of war in the camp.’ But he answered,

‘It is not the sound of the tune of triumph,
Or the sound of the tune of defeat;
It is the sound of song that I hear?’

      “As soon as Moses came near the camp and saw the calf and the dancing, he became enraged; and he hurled the tablets from his hands and shattered them at the foot of the mountain. He took the calf that they had made and burned it; he ground it to powder and strewed it upon the water and so made the Israelites drink it.

      “Moses said to Aaron, ‘What did this people do to you that you have brought such great sin upon them?’ Aaron said, ‘Let not my lord be enraged. You know that this people is bent on evil. They said to me, “Make us a god to lead us; for that man Moses, who brought us from the land of Egypt—we do not know what has happened to him.” So I said to them, ‘Whoever has gold, take it off!” They gave it to me and I hurled it into the fire and out came this calf!”’
(Ex. 32:15-24)

* The Instigators Are Judged *

      “Moses saw that the people were out of control—since Aaron had let them get out of control—so that they were a menace to any who might oppose them. Moses stood up in the gate of the camp and said, Whoever is for the LORD, come here!’ And all the Levites rallied to him. He said to them, ‘Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: Each of you put sword on thigh, go back and forth from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay brother, neighbor, and kin.’ The Levites did as Moses had bidden; and some three thousand of the people fell that day. And Moses said, ‘Dedicate yourselves to the LORD this day—for each of you has been against son and brother—that He may bestow a blessing upon you to day.’”
(Ex. 32:25-30)

* Moses’ Intercedes for the Bride *

      “The next day Moses said to the people, ‘You have been guilty of a great sin. Yet I will now go up to the LORD; perhaps I may win forgiveness for your sin.’ Moses went back to the LORD and said, ‘Alas, this people is guilty of a great sin in making for themselves a god of gold. Now, if You will forgive their sin [well and good]; but if not, erase me from the record which You have written!’”
(Ex, 32:30-32)

* The LORD Responds *

      “But the LORD said to Moses, ‘He who has sinned against Me, him only will I erase from My record. Go now, lead the people where I told you. See, My angel shall go before you. But when I make an accounting, I will bring them to account for their sins.’
      “Then the LORD sent a plague upon the people, for what they did with the calf that Aaron made.
      “Then the LORD said to Moses, ‘Set out from here, you and the people that you have brought up from the land of Egypt, to the land of which I swore to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying, ‘To your offspring will I give it’—I will send an angel before you, and I will drive out the Canaanites, the Amorites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites—a land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go in your midst, since you are a stiffnecked people, lest I destroy you on the way.
      “When the people heard this harsh word, they went into mourning, and none put on his finery.
      “The LORD said to Moses, ‘Say to the Israelite people, “Your are a stiffnecked people. If I were to go in your midst for one moment, I would destroy you. Now, then, leave off your finery. and I will consider what to do to you.”’ So the Israelites remained stripped of the finery from Mount Horeb on.”
(Ex. 32:33-33:6)

      “Now Moses would take the Tent and pitch it outside the camp, at some distance from the camp. It was called the Tent of Meeting, and whoever sought the LORD would go out to the Tent of Meeting that was outside the camp. ... And when Moses entered the Tent, the pillar of cloud would descend and stand at the entrance of the Tent, while He spoke with Moses. ... The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as one man speaks to another. And he (Moses) would then return to the camp; but his attendant, Joshua son of Nun, a youth, would not stir out of the Tent.”
(Ex. 33:7,9,11)

      “Moses said to the LORD, ‘See, You say to me, “Lead this people forward,” but You have not made known to me whom You will send with me. Further, You have said, “I have singled you out by name, and you have, indeed, gained My favor.” Now, if I have truly gained Your favor, pray let me know Your ways, that I may know You and continue in Your favor. Consider too, that this nation is Your people.” And He said, ‘I (My face) will go in the lead and (I) will lighten your burden.’ And he (Moses) said to Him (the LORD), ‘Unless You go in the lead, do not make us leave this place. For how shall it be known that Your people have gained Your favor unless You go with us, so that we may be distinguished, Your people and I, from every people on the face of the earth?’
      “And the LORD said to Moses, ‘I will also do this thing that you have asked; for you have truly gained My favor and I have singled you out by name.’ He (Moses) said, ‘Oh, let me behold Your Presence!’ And He (the LORD) answered, ‘I will make all my goodness pass before you, and I will proclaim before you the name LORD, and (I will grant) the grace that I (will) grant and (show) the compassion that I (will) show. But, ‘He said, ‘you cannot see My face, for man may not see Me and live.’ And the LORD said, ‘See, there is a place near Me. Station yourself on the rock and, as My Presence passes by, I will put you in a cleft of the rock and shield you with My hand until I have passes by. Then I will take My hand away and you will see My back; but My face must not be seen.”’
(Ex. 33:12-23)

* New Ketuba Stones Are Prepared *

      “The LORD said to Moses: ‘Carve two tablets of stone like the first, and I will inscribe upon the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you shattered. Be ready by morning, and in the morning come up to Mount Sinai and present yourself there to Me, on the top of the mountain. No one else shall come up with you, and no one else shall be seen anywhere on the mountain; neither shall the flocks and the herds graze at the foot of this mountain.’
      “So Moses carved two tablets of stone, like the first, and early in the morning he went up on Mount Sinai, as the LORD had commanded him, taking the two stone tablets with him. The LORD came down in a cloud; He stood with him there, and proclaimed the name LORD. The LORD passed before him and proclaimed: The LORD! the LORD! a God compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in kindness and faithfulness, extending kindness to the thousandth generation, forgiving iniquity, transgression, and sin; yet He does not remit all punishment, but visits the iniquity of parents upon children and children’s children, upon the third and fourth generations.’”
(Ex. 34:1-7)

      “Moses hastened to bow low to the ground in homage, and said, ‘If I have gained Your favor, O Lord (YHVH), pray let the Lord (YHVH) go in our midst, even though this is a stiffnecked people. Pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for Your own!”’
(Ex. 34:8-9)

* A Covenant Is Made *

      “He (the Lord) said: ‘I hereby make a covenant. Before all your people I will work such wonders as have not been wrought on all the earth or in any nation; and all the people who are with you shall see how awesome are the LORD’s deeds which I will perform for you. Mark well what I command you this day. I will drive out before you the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites.’”
(Ex. 34:10-11)

* A Warning Is Given *

      “‘Beware of making a covenant with the inhabitants of the land against which you are advancing, lest they be a snare in your midst. No, you must tear down their altars, smash their pillars, and cut down their sacred posts; for you must not worship any other god, because the LORD, whose name is Impassioned, is an impassioned God. You must not make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, for they will lust after their gods and sacrifice to their gods and invite you, and you will eat of their sacrifices. And when you take wives from among their daughters for your sons, their daughters will lust after their gods and will cause your sons to lust after their gods.”’
(Ex. 34:12-16)

* The Rules Are Spoken *

      “‘You shall not make molten gods for yourselves.

      “‘You shall observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread — eating unleavened bread for seven days, as I have commanded you — at the set time of the month of Abib, for in the month of Abib you went forth from Egypt.

      “‘Every first issue of the womb is Mine, from all your livestock that drop a male as firstling, whether cattle or sheep. But the firstling of an ass you shall redeem with a sheep; if you do not redeem it, you must break its neck. And you must redeem every first-born among your sons.

      “‘None shall appear before Me empty-handed.

      “‘Six days you shall work, but on the seventh day you shall cease from labor; you shall cease from labor even at plowing time and harvest time.

      “‘You shall observe the Feast of Weeks, of the first fruits of the wheat harvest; and the Feast of Ingathering at the turn of the year. Three times a year all your males shall appear before the Sovereign LORD, the God of Israel. I will drive out nations from your path and enlarge your territory; no one will covet your land when you go up to appear before the LORD your God three times a year.

      “‘You shall not offer the blood of My sacrifice with anything leavened; and the sacrifice of the feast of Passover shall not be left lying until morning.

      “The choice first fruits of your soil you shall bring to the house of the LORD your God.

      “‘You shall not boil a kid in its mothers milk.”’
(Ex. 34:17-26)

      “And the LORD said to Moses: Write down these commandments, for in accordance with these commandments I make a covenant with you and with Israel.’
      “And he was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights; he ate no bread and drank no water; and he wrote down on the tablets the terms of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.
      “So Moses came down from Mount Sinai. Afterward all the Israelites came near, and he instructed them concerning all that the LORD had imparted to him on Mount Sinai.”
(Ex. 34:27-29a,32)


From: God’s Little Instruction Book
( Honor Books, Inc., 1993)

Man cannot discover new
oceans unless he has the
courage to lose sight
of the shore.

And Peter answered him and said,
“If it be thou, bid me come unto thee
on the water.” And he said, “Come.”
And When Peter was come down
out of the ship, he walked on the water,
to go to Jesus.

Matthew 14:28-29 (NIV)

~ ~ ~

From: God’s Little Instruction Book
(Pub. by Honor Books, Inc., 1993)

To forgive is to set a
prisoner free and
discover the prisoner
was YOU.


For if ye forgive men their trespasses,
your heavenly Father will also
forgive you:
But if ye forgive not men their trespasses,
neither will your Father forgive
your trespasses.

Matthew 6:14-15 (NIV)