Exodus 31-33, Matthew 22:1—22 • Key Verses: Exodus 32:7-8
When we talk about worship, one phrase that is not true is, “Anything goes.” It is possible to worship the right God in the wrong way, as today’s reading indicates.
The incident of the golden calf typically is remembered as a time when the Israelites worshiped the wrong God. Aaron did say, “These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt” (32:4). But what he said could be translated, “This is a god, O Israel.” This verse at times is translated, “This is thy God, O Israel, who brought thee out of Egypt.”
Notice the next verse carefully. It says, “Tomorrow there will be a festival to the LORD.” When the word lord is in capital letters, that indicates the Hebrew word for “Jehovah.”
Put it together. The golden calf represented Jehovah. The people were worshiping the right God but in the wrong way. God had said, “You shall not make for yourself an idol” (20:4), but the people did.
Give careful attention to your worship. At times people worship the right God in the wrong way.
It is tempting to worship in a self-pleasing way. Ask God if your worship is acceptable to Him.
Woodrow Kroll & Tony Beckett