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Sunday, June 25, 2017

The Golden Calf Is in the Church Today: Exposing Idolatry in the Church (Part 1) (Apis, the bull "god")

The Golden Calf Is in the Church Today: Exposing Idolatry in the Church (Part 1)

(Apis, the bull "god") [Print Document]

(Click to see Part 2)

In the Church today are many people who believe that they can live in sin and still go to Heaven. Deception and false teaching are replacing the teaching of all of God’s counsel (Acts 20:27). There are rave parties at some Churches. Worship at many Churches has become entertainment with loud rock groups. Many Church youth groups have video game nights or movie nights, where they play worldly video games and watch worldly movies. Does this agree with God’s Word? 2 Corinthians 6:16-17 says:

[2 Corinthians 6:16-17]
“[16] And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
[17] Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,”

God wants us Christians to come out from the world. To strengthen this point, look at 1 John 2:15-17. Please pay attention to the word “any” in verse 15 and pay attention to the end of verse 17.

1 John 2:15-17
“[15] Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. [16] For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. [17] And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.”

Only those who do the will of God abide forever. If we love the world, God’s love is not in us. Because God is love, and God’s love is not in someone who loves the world, then God is not in that person. God would not be in someone who loves the world, if that person’s love toward God has grown cold. Jesus said:

[Luke 16:13] [13] No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”

If we serve anyone or anything other than Abba God, and that interest is what (or who) we set most of our heart on, then that would be an idol. If we don’t repent (i.e. change our mind toward) from that idol, it will take over our life. Galatians 5:9 says: “A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.”

The Golden Calf and the Ways of the World

The Holy Spirit, through James, warns believers to not love the ways of the world.

James 4:4-8
“[4] Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. [5] Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy? [6] But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.

[7] Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. [8] Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
How do we resist the devil (verse 7)? It starts when we submit ourselves to God. The word for submit in Greek is hupotass√≥. It means: ” subject oneself, to obey...”. Webster’s 1828 dictionary defines submit as: “2. To yield, resign or surrender to the power, will or authority of another;...” This means that once we have surrendered ourselves to God’s will and God’s ways, we can strongly resist the devil, and the devil will have to flee from us.

Being Separate to God like Moses

God does not want us to be conformed to the ways of the world, nor to do what the world does, nor to look like the world. We are to be separate from the world in our actions, thoughts, desires, and words. Moses is a good example of a man who became separate from the world. Raised as a prince in Egypt, Moses had wealth and some power. But, he committed murder while he was an unbeliever. He fled from Egypt when word of his crime came to the pharaoh.

He came to a family of shepherds and worked for Jethro, the patriarch of the family, a believer in the Creator God. While working for Jethro, Moses married one of his daughters and raised a family. He became a follower of God during this time, and encountered the manifestation of God in a burning bush. God told him to lead Israel out of Egypt and told Moses that He (God) would perform mighty signs and wonders in the land of Egypt.

After 10 plagues devastated Egypt, the pharaoh finally let the tribes of Israel leave Egypt. He had likely been reluctant because they had been a cheap labor force of slaves used for building structures, such as temples. God brought the Israelites through the eastern finger of the Red Sea, which is now called the Gulf of Aqaba, near northern Saudi Arabia. (Ron Wyatt found Egyptian chariot wheels at the bottom of the Red Sea in the Gulf of Aqaba. Most were covered with coral, but at at least one was coated in gold, which does not attract coral.)
Dividing the sea, God provided dry land for the Israelites to walk across. After crossing, God brought them up to Mount Sinai, which has been identified as Jabal al-Lawz. There, God spoke to the children of Israel the Ten Commandments.

Apis the Bull ‘god’ of Egypt

In Deuteronomy 9, Moses reminds the children of Israel about their rebellion against God in building a golden calf during a period in which Moses was up in Mount Sinai (or Mt. Horeb). Up in the mountain, Moses was seeking God, and God was giving him the Ten Commandments. While he was gone, the people, who had recently come out of Egypt, wanted to build and worship a golden calf, which likely was Apis, an Egyptian bull (cow) deity. Listen to what Moses said.

Deuteronomy 9:7-10
“[7] Remember, and forget not, how thou provokedst the LORD thy God to wrath in the wilderness: from the day that thou didst depart out of the land of Egypt, until ye came unto this place, ye have been rebellious against the LORD.

[8] Also in Horeb ye provoked the LORD to wrath, so that the LORD was angry with you to have destroyed you. [9] When I was gone up into the mount to receive the tables of stone, even the tables of the covenant which the LORD made with you, then I abode in the mount forty days and forty nights, I neither did eat bread nor drink water:

[10] And the LORD delivered unto me two tables of stone written with the finger of God; and on them was written according to all the words, which the LORD spake with you in the mount out of the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly.”

The Ten Commandments were Written by God’s Finger

Notice that God Himself wrote the Ten Commandments with His own finger (verse 10)? God also spoke to the people the Ten Commandments with a loud, audible voice (verse 10). These Ten Commandments were not done away with, because they are repeated in the New Testament and were taught by Jesus Christ. Let’s continue with Deuteronomy 9.

Deuteronomy 9:11-13
“[11] And it came to pass at the end of forty days and forty nights, that the LORD gave me the two tables of stone, even the tables of the covenant.

[12] And the LORD said unto me, Arise, get thee down quickly from hence; for thy people which thou hast brought forth out of Egypt have corrupted themselves; they are quickly turned aside out of the way which I commanded them; they have made them a molten image. [13] Furthermore the LORD spake unto me, saying, I have seen this people, and, behold, it is a stiffnecked people:”

God had earlier commanded the people, in an audible voice, to only worship and serve Him, and set Him apart, and not make any graven images or have idols. In Exodus 19, we read: [Exodus 19:17] “And Moses brought forth the people out of the camp to meet with God; and they stood at the nether part of the mount.” In Exodus 20, just a little while later, God spoke to the children of Israel these words:

Exodus 20:1-3
“[1] And God spake all these words, saying, [2] I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. [3] Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

Some verses later, we read:

Exodus 20:18-19
“[18] And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off. [19] And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear: but let not God speak with us, lest we die.”

Why would the people say that about God after He had just finished speaking audibly to them from Mount Sinai? They didn’t want God to speak to them because they were afraid they would die. Why? Moses wasn’t afraid of going to speak with God. But, the people in the camp were. For many, it was because they had idolatry in their hearts. Their bad fruit was revealed after Moses left to go up into Mount Sinai (i.e. Mt. Horeb) to receive the Ten Commandments from God. A little over a month after Moses left, the people built an idol, the golden calf, and worshiped it.

“In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence:...”
(Proverbs 14:26)

But, let’s return to their reaction after hearing God’s voice, prior to Moses leaving to receive the Ten Commandments. Many were afraid after hearing God’s voice. Moses tried to reassure the people who were afraid with these words:

Deuteronomy 9:20-23
“[20] And Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you, and that his fear may be before your faces, that ye sin not. [21] And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where God was.

[22] And the LORD said unto Moses, Thus thou shalt say unto the children of Israel, Ye have seen that I have talked with you from heaven. [23] Ye shall not make with me gods of silver, neither shall ye make unto you gods of gold.”

In verse 20, Moses told the people not to be afraid of God, but Moses clarified that we should have a reverential respect and godly fear toward God. The Holy Spirit, through Proverbs, said that strong confidence comes from fearing God, in the right way:

[Proverbs 14:26-27]
[26] In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge.
[27] The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death.

This fear toward God is strong confidence and is a fountain of life, so that we depart from the snares of death. Death has snares, and there are sins which lead to death — spiritual death and separation from God. Let’s look at Romans 6:15-16.

Romans 6:15-16
“[15] What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid. [16] Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?”


Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, God wants us to have peace and confidence in Him, but we cannot have true peace or confidence if we are living in sin and rebellion against God’s Word and ways. Sin always produces problems and regrets, and eventually leads to eternal spiritual separation from God (i.e. Hell).

But, obedience to God always brings blessings, joy, and peace (Isaiah 64:5-6, Psalm 25:10, Psalm 112). God really shall meet all our emotional, physical, and spiritual needs, if we seek Him and surrender ourselves to God. Abba Father God sent Jesus Christ to reconcile us to Himself (Romans 5:7-11). Katallass√≥ is the Greek word for reconcile. Webster’s 1828 dictionary defines reconcile as: “ restore to friendship or favor after estrangement;...” It also means: “ bring to agreement…”

Romans 5:10 says: “[10] For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.”

God restored us to agreement and friendship with Him by the death of Jesus Christ (who, of course, died and rose from the dead. See 1 Corinthians 15:1-7). If we truly surrender ourselves to Jesus Christ, and resist the devil, the devil will have to leave us. Then, we will be able to receive God’s love better. Psalms 36 speaks of God’s love in verses 7 through 9. Please think about this and seek God about these things we are discussing. God will lead us into the truth, for He is the Truth (John 14:6).

Psalm 36:7-9
“[7] How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.
[8] They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house; and thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures.
[9] For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light."

Many people have heard that Christians are to repent from their sins. But, what does repent actually mean? The New Testament Greek word for “repent” is metanoe√≥ (See Matthew 4:17). According to Thayer’s Greek Lexicon, this word means: “ change one's mind for the better, heartily to amend with abhorrence of one's past sins:...” So, the biblical definition of repenting from sin is hating the sin; changing your mind from acceptance of the sin to rejection of the sin; and desiring and making the choice to do differently next time temptation comes. Let us look to Abba Father God, make the choice to forsake sin, and Abba God will help us to obey Him and fellowship with Him.

If you are coming here as a non-Christian, I encourage you to read this. God desires to have fellowship with you, as you make Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior.



Webster, Noah. American Dictionary of the English Language. United Books Press, Inc., 2009. (i.e. Webster's 1828 dictionary)

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