Here is a handout I made to go with the Seminary lesson for Exodus 32. Following are the quotes, etc, that are included:
loving the creation more than the creator
“Let us here observe, that three things are necessary in order that any rational and intelligent being may exercise faith in God unto life and salvation.
“First, the idea that he actually exists.
“Secondly, a correct idea of his character, perfections, and attributes.
“Thirdly, an actual knowledge that the course of life which he is pursuing is according to his will. For without an acquaintance with these three important facts, the faith of every rational being must be imperfect and unproductive; but with this understanding it can become perfect and fruitful” (Lectures on Faith).
Why is having a correct understanding of the character of God important to faith?
Exodus 32:1–8 . What false god did Israel worship? _______________________________
Exodus 20:3–5 . What had the Lord already told the Israelites about false gods? _______________________________________
Exodus 24:3 . Why was the sin of idolatry so serious for these people? ________________________________________________________________________________
Exodus 32:1 . Why did the Israelites make and worship the golden calf? ________________________________________________________________________________
How do people today struggle with these same problems?
How did the Lord feel when the Israelites worshiped a false god? (Ex 32 9–10 ). ________________________________________
What did Moses say to the Lord to try to save the people? (Ex 32:11–14 ; see also Exodus 32:12 footnote a; JST, Exodus 32:14 ). ________________________________________________________________________________
Ex 32. 21–24 – What did Aaron say to try to excuse his sin? _________________________
How do we sometimes rationalize our sins today? __________________________________________
What did Moses ask in Exodus 32:26 that our prophet still asks?
How do we show the Lord we are on His side?
Exodus 32: 30 – What words or phrases remind you of what Christ did for all sinners?
How do verses Exodus 32:30–34 show that Moses loved the people despite their wickedness? _____________________________________
“Whatever thing a man sets his heart and his trust in most is his god; and if his god doesn’t also happen to be the true and living God of Israel, that man is laboring in idolatry.”
Spencer W. Kimball
“Modern idols or false gods can take such forms as clothes, homes, businesses, machines, automobiles, pleasure boats, and numerous other material deflectors from the path to godhood. . . . Intangible things make just as ready gods. Degrees and letters and titles can become idols. Many young men decide to attend college when they should be on missions first. . . . Many people build and furnish a home and buy the automobile first—and then find they ‘cannot afford’ to pay tithing. Whom do they worship? . . . Young married couples who postpone parenthood until their degrees are attained might be shocked if their expressed preference were labeled idolatry. . . . Many worship the hunt, the fishing trip, the vacation, the weekend picnics and outings. Others have as their idols the games of sport, baseball, football, the bullfight, or golf. . . . Still another image men worship is that of power and prestige. Many will trample underfoot the spiritual and often ethical values in their climb to success. These gods of power, wealth, and influence are most demanding and are quite as real as the golden calves of the children of Israel in the wilderness” ( The Miracle of Forgiveness, Spencer W. Kimball , 41).