Worshiping the Golden Calf

March18, 2021

Exodus 32:7–14 | John 5:30–47  | Psalm 106:6–7,19–23

They have cast for themselves an image of a calf, and have worshipped it and sacrificed to it.

I suppose having grown up with the Charlton Heston interpretation of Moses my understanding is influenced by the screen version. The scene where he comes down from the mount and, with a lot of anger, rails against the mob and their golden calf.

The Israelites’ belief in God seemed a bit shaky. Having been delivered from captivity, they sought an icon or visible manifestation to thank and worship. Moses put them back on the right path.

But reading the passage from John, we find Jesus reprimanding those who seek testimony, or proof, in order to believe in and glorify Jesus – How can you believe when you accept glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the one who alone is God?

The two stories seem similar, and speak to a lack of true believing.

How does one discern their belief in today’s world? It seems growing up I was always taught to challenge the status quo, to think outside the box and seek proof. I enjoyed exploring how and why things worked the way they did. 

Maybe that’s one of the reasons I find peace when I come to St. Luke’s. It’s one of the few places where I allow myself to accept without having to challenge. But ever the engineer, when my time comes, I’ll be curious to see the other side of this life and perhaps find the answers to mysteries we can only hope for today.

Mike Sullivan