Backsliding, Israel Exanples
Most Relevant Verses
All the congregation of the Israelites moved on from the Wilderness of Sin by stages, according to the commandment of the Lord, and encamped at Rephidim; but there was no water for the people to drink. Therefore, the people contended with Moses, and said, Give us water that we may drink. And Moses said to them, Why do you find fault with me? Why do you tempt the Lord and try His patience? But the people thirsted there for water, and the people murmured against Moses, and said, Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to kill us and our children and livestock with thirst?read more.
So Moses cried to the Lord, What shall I do with this people? They are almost ready to stone me. And the Lord said to Moses, Pass on before the people, and take with you some of the elders of Israel; and take in your hand the rod with which you smote the river [Nile], and go. Behold, I will stand before you there on the rock at [Mount] Horeb; and you shall strike the rock, and water shall come out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. He called the place Massah [proof] and Meribah [contention] because of the faultfinding of the Israelites and because they tempted and tried the patience of the Lord, saying, Is the Lord among us or not?
When the people saw that Moses delayed to come down from the mountain, [they] gathered together to Aaron, and said to him, Up, make us gods to 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. So Aaron replied, Take the gold rings from the ears of your wives, your sons, and daughters, and bring them to me. So all the people took the gold rings from their ears and brought them to Aaron.read more.
And he received the gold at their hand and fashioned it with a graving tool and made it a molten calf; and they said, These are your gods, O Israel, which brought you up out of the land of Egypt! And when Aaron saw the molten calf, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, Tomorrow shall be a feast to the Lord. 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. The Lord said to Moses, Go down, for your people, whom you brought out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves; They have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them; they have made them a molten calf and have worshiped it and sacrificed to it, and said, These are your gods, O Israel, that brought you up out of the land of Egypt! And the Lord said to Moses, I have seen this people, and behold, it is a stiff-necked people; Now therefore let Me alone, that My wrath may burn hot against them and that I may destroy them; but I will make of you a great nation. But Moses besought the Lord his God, and said, Lord, why does Your wrath blaze hot against Your people, whom You have brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power and a mighty hand? Why should the Egyptians say, For evil He brought them forth, to slay them in the mountains and consume them from the face of the earth? Turn from Your fierce wrath, and change Your mind concerning this evil against Your people. [Earnestly] remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, Your servants, to whom You swore by Your own self and said to them, I will multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens, and all this land that I have spoken of will I give to your seed, and they shall inherit it forever. Then the Lord turned from the evil which He had thought to do to His people. And Moses turned and went down from the mountain with the two tables of the Testimony in his hand, tables or tablets that were written on both sides. The tables were the work of God; the writing was the writing of God, graven upon the tables. And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said to Moses, There is a noise of war in the camp. But Moses said, It is not the sound of shouting for victory, neither is it the sound of the cry of the defeated, but the sound of singing that I hear. And as soon as he came near to the camp he saw the calf and the dancing. And Moses' anger blazed hot and he cast the tables out of his hands and broke them at the foot of the mountain. And he took the calf they had made and burned it in the fire, and ground it to powder and scattered it on the water and made the Israelites drink it. And Moses said to Aaron, What did this people do to you, that you have brought so great a sin upon them? And Aaron said, Let not the anger of my lord blaze hot; you know the people, that they are set on evil. For they said to me, Make us gods which 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. I said to them, Those who have any gold, let them take it off. So they gave it to me; then I cast it into the fire, and there came out this calf. And when Moses saw that the people were unruly and unrestrained (for Aaron had let them get out of control, so that they were a derision and object of shame among their enemies), Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Whoever is on the Lord's side, let him come to me. And all the Levites [the priestly tribe] gathered together to him. And he said to them, Thus says the Lord God of Israel, Every man put his sword on his side and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbor. And the sons of Levi did according to the word of Moses; and there fell of the people that day about 3000 men. And Moses said [to the Levites, By your obedience to God's command] you have consecrated yourselves today [as priests] to the Lord, each man [at the cost of being] against his own son and his own brother, that the Lord may restore and bestow His blessing upon you this day. The next day Moses said to the people, You have sinned a great sin. And now I will go up to the Lord; perhaps I can make atonement for your sin. So Moses returned to the Lord, and said, Oh, these people have sinned a great sin and have made themselves gods of gold! Yet now, if You will forgive their sin -- "and if not, blot me, I pray You, out of Your book which You have written! But the Lord said to Moses, Whoever has sinned against Me, I will blot him [not you] out of My book. But now go, lead the people to the place of which I have told you. Behold, My Angel shall go before you. Nevertheless, in the day when I punish I will visit their sin upon them! And the Lord sent a plague upon the people because they made the calf which Aaron fashioned for them.
But lusted exceedingly in the wilderness and tempted and tried to restrain God [with their insistent desires] in the desert. And He gave them their request, but sent leanness into their souls and [thinned their numbers by] disease and death. They envied Moses also in the camp, and Aaron [the high priest], the holy one of the Lord.read more.
Therefore the earth opened and swallowed up Dathan and closed over the company of Abiram. And a fire broke out in their company; the flame burned up the wicked. They made a calf in Horeb and worshiped a molten image. Thus they exchanged Him Who was their Glory for the image of an ox that eats grass [they traded their Honor for the image of a calf]! They forgot God their Savior, Who had done such great things in Egypt, Wonders and miracles in the land of Ham, dreadful and awesome things at the Red Sea. Therefore He said He would destroy them. [And He would have done so] had not Moses, His chosen one, stepped into the breach before Him to turn away His threatening wrath. Then they spurned and despised the pleasant and desirable land [Canaan]; they believed not His word [neither trusting in, relying on, nor holding to it]; But they murmured in their tents and hearkened not to the voice of the Lord. Therefore He lifted up His hand [as if taking an oath] against them, that He would cause them to fall in the wilderness, Cast out their descendants among the nations, and scatter them in the lands [of the earth]. They joined themselves also to the [idol] Baal of Peor and ate sacrifices [offered] to the lifeless [gods]. Thus they provoked the Lord to anger with their practices, and a plague broke out among them. Then stood up Phinehas [the priest] and executed judgment, and so the plague was stayed. And that was credited to him for righteousness (right doing and right standing with God) to all generations forever. They angered the Lord also at the waters of Meribah, so that it went ill with Moses for their sakes; For they provoked [Moses'] spirit, so that he spoke unadvisedly with his lips.
And Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died, being 110 years old. And they buried him within the boundary of his inheritance in Timnath-heres in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash. And also all that generation were gathered to their fathers, and there arose another generation after them who did not know (recognize, understand) the Lord, or even the work which He had done for Israel.read more.
And the people of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord and served the Baals. And they forsook the Lord, the God of their fathers, Who brought them out of the land of Egypt. They went after other gods of the peoples round about them and bowed down to them, and provoked the Lord to anger. And they forsook the Lord and served Baal [the god worshiped by the Canaanites] and the Ashtaroth [female deities such as Ashtoreth and Asherah]. So the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and He gave them into the power of plunderers who robbed them; and He sold them into the hands of their enemies round about, so that they could no longer stand before their foes. Whenever they went out, the hand of the Lord was against them for evil as the Lord had said, and as the Lord had sworn to them; and they were bitterly distressed. But the Lord raised up judges, who delivered them out of the hands of those who robbed them. And yet they did not listen to their judges, for they played the harlot after other gods and bowed down to them. They turned quickly out of the way in which their fathers had walked, who had obeyed the commandments of the Lord, and they did not so. When the Lord raised them up judges, then He was with the judge and delivered them out of the hands of their enemies all the days of the judge; for the Lord was moved to relent because of their groanings by reason of those who oppressed and vexed them. But when the judge was dead, they turned back and corrupted themselves more than their fathers, following and serving other gods, and bowing down to them. They did not cease from their practices or their stubborn way. So the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel; and He said, Because this people have transgressed My covenant which I commanded their fathers and have not listened to My voice, I from now on will also not drive out from before them any of the nations which Joshua left when he died, That through them I may prove Israel, whether they will keep the way of the Lord to walk in it, as their fathers kept it, or not. So the Lord left those nations, without driving them out at once, nor had He delivered them into Joshua's power.
They did not destroy the [heathen] nations as the Lord commanded them, But mingled themselves with the [idolatrous] nations and learned their ways and works And served their idols, which were a snare to them.read more.
Yes, they sacrificed their sons and their daughters to demons And shed innocent blood, even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan; and the land was polluted with their blood. Thus were they defiled by their own works, and they played the harlot and practiced idolatry with their own deeds [of idolatrous rites]. Therefore was the wrath of the Lord kindled against His people, insomuch that He abhorred and rejected His own heritage. And He gave them into the hands of the [heathen] nations, and they that hated them ruled over them. Their enemies also oppressed them, and they were brought into subjection under the hand of their foes. Many times did [God] deliver them, but they were rebellious in their counsel and sank low through their iniquity.
Did not Solomon king of Israel act treacherously against God and miss the mark on account of such women? Among many nations there was no king like him. He was loved by his God, and God made him king over all Israel; yet strange women even caused him to sin [when he was old he turned treacherously away from the Lord to other gods, and God rent his kingdom from him].