Exodus 32 | Welcome to the Clown Show!

This week, we move into one of Exodus’s most infamous and sad stories: the story of the golden calf.

Here, we are given a graphic portrayal of our fickleness and foolishness.
We will use the imagery of a clown show to help us get to the heart of this passage.

This is what sin does. It seeks to turn life into a clown show, full of foolishness and folly. It makes us ignorant and idiotic. 

It would be funny…if it wasn’t so tragic. 
It would be unbelievable…if it weren’t so relatable. 

Notes for Personal Study or Community Groups 

At the clown show: 

1. What you “see” misses what is really happening. 

  1.     They “see” Moses is dead. He is not. (v.1) 
  2.     They “see” their “god”. It is not. (v.4)
  3.     They “see” something “funny.” It was not. (vv.6, 19) 
  4.     Aaron “sees” it as no big deal. It was. (v.22) 

2. What you “celebrate” misuses what has been given. (vv.2-6) 

    Every act of their “worship” is a cheap knockoff.

3. What is “said” misrepresents what is really true. 

  1.     What the People said: Not true. (v.4)
  2.     What Aaron said: Not true.  (v.5)
  3.     What Joshua heard: Not true.  (v.17) 
  4.     What Aaron said: Partially true, but not the point. (v.22) 
  5.     What the People said: Partially true, but not the point. (v.23) 
  6.     What Aaron said: Not true. (v.23) 

Discussion Questions: 

Do you think the people wanted the calf to replace God? Or Moses? 

What are you in danger of “seeing” wrongly? 

What does our world “celebrate” that is actually misusing God’s gift? 

What strikes you about Aaron’s bad confession? 

Questions for kids:

Have you ever been caught red-handed? What kind of excuse did you make up? Did anyone believe it? 

How should Aaron have responded? Why do you think he didn’t? 

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