In the Lectionary

October 11, 28A (Exodus 32:1-14; Psalm 106:1-6, 19-23)

The golden calf isn’t a terrible idea. It’s just not God’s idea.

I’ve always had a heart for Aaron. Even the best of us can forget to aim before we fire; especially when people are clamoring for decisions to be made and a job to get done. Sometimes the results of quick, high-pressure decisions are full of affirmation. Other times, as in Aaron’s case, they are full of bull.

I feel for the guy. He’s been left with no timetable for the return of Moses, and the people are starting to get seriously restless. “Come, make gods for us,” they say to Aaron. “As for this Moses . . . we do not know what has become of him.”

How quickly the crowd turns on Moses. Their lack of trust in him, and therefore in God, continues to astound. A burning bush, a walking stick that turns into a snake and then back into a stick again, ten plagues, release from captivity, the Red Sea parted and Pharaoh’s army destroyed, daily food and water provided in the wilderness, and all the respect that Moses gets from the people is “ we do not know what has become of him.” Tough crowd.