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19 Bible Verses about Calf worship
Most Relevant Verses
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!
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!
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,read more.
Wonders and miracles in the land of Ham, dreadful and awesome things at the Red Sea.
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 I looked, and behold, you had sinned against the Lord your God; you had made for yourselves a molten calf. You had turned aside quickly from the way which the Lord had commanded you. I took the two tables, cast them out of my two hands, and broke them before your eyes. Then I fell down before the Lord as before, for forty days and forty nights; I neither ate food nor drank water, because of all the sin you had committed in doing wickedly in the sight of the Lord, to provoke Him to anger.read more.
For I was afraid of the anger and hot displeasure which the Lord held against you, enough to destroy you. But the Lord listened to me that time also. And the Lord was very angry with Aaron, angry enough to have destroyed him, and I prayed for Aaron also at the same time. And I took your sin, the calf which you had made, and burned it with fire and crushed it, grinding it very small, until it was as fine as dust; and I cast the dust of it into the brook that came down out of the mountain.
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.
Jeroboam said in his heart, Now the kingdom will return to the house of David. If this people goes up to the house of the Lord at Jerusalem to sacrifice, then the heart of this people will turn again to their lord, to Rehoboam king of Judah; and they will kill me and go back to Rehoboam king of Judah. So the king took counsel and made two calves of gold. And he said to the people, It is too much for you to go [all the way] up to Jerusalem. Behold your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt.read more.
And he set the one golden calf in Bethel, and the other he put in Dan. And this thing became a sin; for the people went to worship each of them even as far as Dan.
They despised and rejected His statutes and His covenant which He made with their fathers and His warnings to them, and they followed vanity (false gods -- "falsehood, emptiness, and futility) and [they themselves and their prayers] became false (empty and futile). They went after the heathen round about them, of whom the Lord had charged them that they should not do as they did. And they forsook all the commandments of the Lord their God and made for themselves molten images, even two calves, and made an Asherah and worshiped all the [starry] hosts of the heavens and served Baal.
For the Levites left their suburbs and their possessions and came to Judah and Jerusalem, for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them out from executing the priest's office to the Lord. And he appointed his own priests for the high places and for the [idols of demon] he-goats, and calves he had made.
Therefore the Lord was very angry with Israel and removed them out of His sight. None was left but the tribe of Judah. Judah also did not keep the commandments of the Lord their God, but walked in the customs which Israel introduced. The Lord rejected all the descendants of Israel and afflicted them and delivered them into the hands of spoilers, until He had cast them out of His sight.read more.
For He tore Israel from the house of David; and they made Jeroboam son of Nebat king. And Jeroboam drew and drove Israel away from following the Lord and made them sin a great sin. For the Israelites walked in all the sins Jeroboam committed; they departed not from them Until the Lord removed Israel from His sight, as He had foretold by all His servants the prophets. So Israel was carried away from their own land to Assyria to this day. The king of Assyria brought men from Babylon, Cuthah, Avva, Hamath, and Sepharvaim and placed them in the cities of Samaria instead of the Israelites. They possessed Samaria and dwelt in its cities. At the beginning of their dwelling there, they did not fear and revere the Lord. Therefore the Lord sent lions among them, which killed some of them. So the king of Assyria was told: The nations you removed and placed in the cities of Samaria do not know the manner in which the God of the land requires their worship. Therefore He has sent lions among them, and behold, they are killing them, because they do not know the manner of [worship demanded by] the God of the land. Then the king of Assyria commanded, Take to Samaria one of the priests you brought from there, and let him [and his helpers] go and live there and let him teach the people the law of the God of the land. So one of the priests whom they had carried away from Samaria came and dwelt in Bethel and taught them how they should fear and revere the Lord.
They set up kings, but not from Me [therefore without My blessing]; they have made princes or removed them [without consulting Me; therefore], I knew and recognized [them] not. With their silver and their gold they made idols for themselves, that they [the silver and the gold] may be destroyed. Your calf [idol], O Samaria, is loathsome and I have spurned it. My wrath burns against them. How long will it be before they attain purity? For this [calf] too is from Israel; a craftsman made it; therefore it is not God. The calf of Samaria shall be broken to shivers and go up in flames.read more.
For they sow the wind and they shall reap the whirlwind. The standing grain has no heads; it shall yield no meal; if it were to yield, strangers and aliens would eat it up. Israel is [as if] swallowed up. Already they have become among the nations as a vessel [of cheap, coarse pottery] that is useless. For they are gone up to Assyria, a wild ass taking her own way by herself; Ephraim has hired lovers.
The inhabitants of Samaria shall be in terror for the calf [idol] of Beth-aven [the house of idolatry, contemptuously meaning Bethel], for its people shall mourn over it and its [idolatrous] priests who rejoiced over it [shall tremble] for the glory of [their calf god], because it is departed from it. [The golden calf] shall also be carried into Assyria as a tribute-gift to the fighting King Jareb; Ephraim shall be put to shame and Israel shall be ashamed of his own counsel [to set up calf worship and detach Israel from Judah].
The graven images of their gods you shall burn with fire. You shall not desire the silver or gold that is on them, nor take it for yourselves, lest you be ensnared by it, for it is an abomination to the Lord your God.
All who make graven idols are confusion, chaos, and worthlessness. Their objects (idols) in which they delight do not profit them, and their own witnesses (worshipers) do not see or know, so that they are put to shame. Who is [such a fool as] to fashion a god or cast a graven image that is profitable for nothing? Behold, all his fellows shall be put to shame, and the craftsmen, [how can they make a god?] they are but men. Let them all be gathered together, let them stand forth; they shall be terrified, they shall be put to shame together.read more.
The ironsmith sharpens and uses a chisel and works it over the coals; he shapes [the core of the idol] with hammers and forges it with his strong arm. He becomes hungry and his strength fails; he drinks no water and is faint. The carpenter stretches out a line, he marks it out with a pencil or red ocher; he fashions [an idol] with planes and marks it out with the compasses; and he shapes it to have the figure of a man, with the beauty of a man, that it may dwell in a house. He hews for himself cedars, and takes the holm tree and the oak and lets them grow strong for himself among the trees of the forest; he plants a fir tree or an ash, and the rain nourishes it. Then it becomes fuel for a man to burn; a part of it he takes and warms himself, yes, he kindles a fire and bakes bread. [Then out of the remainder, the leavings] he also makes a god and worships it! He [with his own hands] makes it into a graven image and falls down and worships it! He burns part of the wood in the fire; with part of it he [cooks and] eats flesh, he roasts meat and is satisfied. Also he warms himself and says, Aha! I am warm, I have seen the fire! And from what is left [of the log] he makes a god, his graven idol. He falls down to it, he worships it and prays to it and says, Deliver me, for you are my god! They do not know or understand, for their eyes God has let become besmeared so that they cannot see, and their minds as well so that they cannot understand. And no one considers in his mind, nor has he knowledge and understanding [enough] to say [to himself], I have burned part of this log in the fire, and also I have baked bread on its coals and have roasted meat and eaten it. And shall I make the remainder of it into an abomination [the very essence of what is disgusting, detestable, and shamefully vile in the eyes of a jealous God]? Shall I fall down and worship the stock of a tree [a block of wood without consciousness or life]? That kind of man feeds on ashes [and finds his satisfaction in ashes]! A deluded mind has led him astray, so that he cannot release and save himself, or ask, Is not [this thing I am holding] in my right hand a lie?
They lavish gold out of the cup or bag, weigh out silver on the scales, and hire a goldsmith, and he fashions it into a god; [then] they fall down, yes, they worship it! They bear it upon their shoulders [in religious processions or into battle]; they carry it and set it down in its place, and there it stands. It cannot move from its place. Even if one cries to it for help, yet [the idol] cannot answer or save him out of his distress.
Because when they knew and recognized Him as God, they did not honor and glorify Him as God or give Him thanks. But instead they became futile and godless in their thinking [with vain imaginings, foolish reasoning, and stupid speculations] and their senseless minds were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools [professing to be smart, they made simpletons of themselves]. And by them the glory and majesty and excellence of the immortal God were exchanged for and represented by images, resembling mortal man and birds and beasts and reptiles.