Exodus 32

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1 And the people saw that Moses delayed to come·​·down from the mountain; and the people assembled to Aaron, and said to him, Arise, make us gods which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man who made us come·​·up out·​·of the land of Egypt, we know not what has become of him.

2 And Aaron said to them, Pull·​·off the gold earrings which are on the ears of your women, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring them to me.

3 And all the people pulled·​·off the gold earrings that were in their ears, and brought them to Aaron.

4 And he took them from their hand, and formed it with a stylus, and made it a molten calf; and they said, These are thy gods, O Israel, which made thee come·​·up out of the land of Egypt.

5 And Aaron saw, and he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, Tomorrow is a festival to jehovah.*

6 And they got·​·up·​·early on the morrow, and offered·​·up burnt·​·offerings, and presented peace·​·offerings; and the people sat·​·down to eat and to drink, and rose·​·up to sport.

7 And Jehovah spoke to Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, whom thou madest to come up out of the land of Egypt, has corrupted itself;

8 they have turned·​·aside hastily from the way which I commanded them; they have made for themselves a molten calf, and have worshipped it, and have sacrificed to it, and said, These are thy gods, O Israel, which made thee to come up out of the land of Egypt.

9 And Jehovah said to Moses, I have seen this people, and behold it is a stiff-necked people;

10 and thou, permit Me, and My anger will be·​·fierce against them, and I will consume· them ·all; and I will make thee into a great nation.

11 And Moses implored the faces of Jehovah his God, and said, Why, Jehovah, shall Thine anger be·​·fierce against Thy people, whom Thou hast brought·​·out from the land of Egypt with great power and with a firm hand?

12 Why should the Egyptians say, saying, Into evil did He bring· them ·out, to kill them in the mountains, and to consume· them ·all from on the faces of the ground? Turn·​·back from the fierceness of Thine anger, and repent of the evil to Thy people.

13 Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel Thy servants, to whom Thou promised by Thyself, and didst say to them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens, and all this land, of which I have said, I will give it to your seed, and they shall inherit it for an age.

14 And Jehovah repented of the evil of which He spoke to do to His people.

15 And Moses turned· his ·face and came·​·down from the mountain, and the two tablets of the Testimony were in his hand; the tablets were written on their two crossings, from this side and from that side they were written.*

16 And the tablets were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, graven upon the tablets.

17 And Joshua heard the voice of the people in their shouting, and he said to Moses, There is a voice of war in the camp.

18 And he said, It is not the voice of a cry for victory, and it is not the voice of a cry of being·​·overcome; it is the voice of a miserable cry* that I hear.

19 And it was, as he came·​·near to the camp, that he saw the calf and the dances; and Moses was·​·fierce with anger, and he cast the tablets out of his hand, and broke them beneath the mountain.

20 And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt· it ·up with fire, and ground it until it was·​·thin, and dispersed it upon the faces of the waters, and made the sons of Israel drink.

21 And Moses said to Aaron, What did this people to thee, that thou hast brought so great a sin on them?

22 And Aaron said, Let not thine anger be·​·fierce, my lord; thou knowest the people, that it is in evil.

23 And they said to me, Make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that made us to come up out of the land of Egypt, we know not what has become of him.

24 And I said to them, To whom there is gold, Pull· ye it ·off; and they gave it to me; and I cast it into the fire, and this calf came·​·out.

25 And Moses saw the people, that they were·​·dissolute, for Aaron had made· them ·dissolute to annihilation by those rising·​·up against them;

26 and Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Who is for Jehovah? Come to me. And all the sons of Levi were gathered·​·together to him.

27 And he said to them, Thus says Jehovah the God of Israel, Set ye every man his sword upon his thigh, and pass· ye ·through and return from gate to gate in the camp, and kill ye, a man his brother, and a man his companion, and a man his neighbor.

28 And the sons of Levi did according to the word of Moses; and there fell of the people that day up to three thousand men.

29 And Moses said, Fill your hand* today to Jehovah, for a man is against his son, and against his brother; that He may give a blessing on you today.

30 And it was, on the morrow, that Moses said to the people, You have sinned a great sin; and now I will go·​·up to Jehovah; perhaps I shall make·​·atonement for your sin.

31 And Moses returned to Jehovah and said, I pray Thee! This people has sinned a great sin, and they have made them gods of gold.

32 And now if Thou lift·​·off their sin—; and if not, I pray, wipe me out·​·of Thy book which Thou hast written.

33 And Jehovah said to Moses, Whomever has sinned against Me, him will I wipe out·​·of My book.

34 And now go, lead the people to that about which I spoke to thee; behold My angel shall go before thee; and in the day of My visiting I will visit their sin on them.

35 And Jehovah struck the people, because they had made the calf, which Aaron made.

  

Exploring the Meaning of Exodus 32      

Napsal(a) Emanuel Swedenborg

Arcana Coelestia 10393. In the internal sense in this chapter there is described that a church could not be instituted among the Israelitish people, because they were wholly in externals without any internal; and that to prevent their profaning the holy things of heaven and the church, interior things were completely closed with them. That this people was wholly in externals without any internal, is signified by the "golden calf" which they worshiped instead of Jehovah. And that interior things with them were completely closed, lest they should profane the holy things of heaven and of the church, is signified by the tables of the Law being broken by Moses, and by Moses grinding the golden calf and strewing the dust into the waters and giving them to drink, and also by their being slain in the camp by the sons of Levi to the number of three thousand men.

Arcana Coelestia 10394. It is further described in the internal sense that although a church could not be instituted among them, there were nevertheless among them representatives which are ultimates of the church, to the end that the Word might be written, which should close in these ultimates. These things are signified by Jehovah‘s being entreated by Moses.

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Thanks to the Kempton Project for the permission to use this New Church translation of the Word.


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