Nothing new under the Sun.

golden-calf

9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. 10 Is there anything whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.” Eccl 1:10 KJV

I abhor the prosperity gospel. I quite literally foam at the mouth when it comes to this subject as my poor wife would quickly attest to.  She’s had to sit through endless rants on the subject every time we drive past a billboard or flick across most mainstream televangelist on tv. 

Many things irk me about it to say the least. But whilst having a cursory read through of the book of exodus 32 I’ve come to realise my mistake.

All this time I’ve been operating under the very false notion that the prosperity gospel is ‘new’; something which has been recently conjured up by slick salesmen who have grossly distorted the scriptures of God for profit. But in reality that’s giving them far much more credit than they deserve. Wearing a bow tie for a calf doesn’t change what it is…

For the sake of clarity: The prosperity gospel isn’t just explicitly about money.
But it is any gospel which is not Christ centered but self-centered.
It is any gospel which makes ‘your well-being’ the primary focus whilst whittling down every other aspect of God’s natureand his purpose for us to mere foot notes.

The book of exodus is for Israel literaly and to us typological. This is how God through His own infinite mercy and wisdom having brought us out of the world, has called us into a personal walk of worship and intimacy with Himself.

Let’s pick up from chapter 32 where Moses has been away on the mountain with God for 40 days and 40 nights; Lets see if there is a pattern here….

Verse 1

“When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, the people gathered themselves together to Aaron and said to him. Up, make us gods who shall go before us. As for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.” 

  • The people got tired of the doctrine of perseverance and waiting on God Isa 40:31. Instead they itched for instant gratification and sought out a Man of God who would conjure up for them a god who fits into their agenda and mold 2 Tim 4:3-4. One that would be at their beck and call whom they could carry anywhere they liked and would remain within the boundaries where they set him down Isa 46:7.

Verse 2-3

So Aaron said to them, “Take off the rings of gold that are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.” So all the people took off the rings of gold that were in their ears and brought them to Aaron. 

  • In the true mentality of seekers, they bewitched Gal 3:1 themselves and imagined a god who will be served by non-altruistic gifting’s. It is a system of worship where you give (‘sow’) in order to receive back in “good, measure, pressed down and shaken together”. Their seed had to be produced from the rings on their ears because it was from a position of highly selective hearing. They hear only what they want to hear and act in faith on that alone; Ears that were not inclined to hear the ‘whole counsel of God’ Acts 20:27.

Verse 4-5

And he received the gold from their hand and fashioned it with a graving tool and made a golden calf. And they said, “These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!” When Aaron saw this, he built an altar before it. And Aaron made a proclamation and said, “Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord. 

  • With the tools of skillful utterance their high priest fashions and presents to their imaginations a sleek & shiny deity whom they build an edifice unto with great pagentry and colourful activities in the pretext of sunday service.

    Why was it a calf? Why not an eagle? Or a lion?
    Why not depict the divine nature as one of exalted revelation or unlimited strength?.

    The most simplistic answer is that they chose a calf because of what it represents. Provision, Prosperity and Utility.

    When we juxtapose their immediate socio-economic realities against their current walk through the wilderness, we understand their ‘Carpe – Diem’ mantra better.

Verse 6:

“And they rose up early the next day and offered burnt offerings and brought peace offerings. And the people sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play {revel} {shamefully without moral restraint} Exo 32:6

  • They arose in the prime of their lives to define the kingdom of God as meat and drink Rom 14:7. Naturally, having continually sown to the flesh Gal 6:8 , they reap the inevitable fruit of corruption: the complete moral degradation of the congregation who come practically naked to church enticing and sleeping with one another with total abandon all under the flag of ‘false grace’.

That in a rather simplistic narrative is the church of god at that time in the wilderness.
How arE the bulk of our ‘worship’ services any different?. Aren’t the majority of our assemblies now about building the same golden calf that they did? dont our offering bags represent our modern ‘censers’ and our accompanying musical numbers incense?

Just as were told in verses 25-26 one consequence churhces of our age also suffer  is the open derision from the heathen. who correctly view our irresponsible behaviors cloaked (under the guise of self-righteous religion) as contemptible.

The propspertiy though stylized is nothing new but the same old idolatory of ages past.

Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, Let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. 2Ti 2:19

Moses’s call is still ringing out to we who profess to be the lord’s people this day: WHOEVER IS ON THE LORD’S SIDE COME TO ME

If you find yourself in just such an assembly or conregation that fits into this narrative, then flee the plain for the coming destruction is surely certain. It has happened before and will happen again…

Grace to you.

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