God is coming to deliver judgement against the world

3 min

“Ezekiel 18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.”

“John 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.”

“Jeremiah 6:16 Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.

6:17 Also I set watchmen over you, saying, Hearken to the sound of the trumpet. But they said, We will not hearken.”

“Jeremiah 7:2 Stand in the gate of the LORD’s house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of the LORD, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship the LORD.

7:3 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place. 7:4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, are these.”

Moses Punishes the Wrongdoers

Seizing the idol, Moses cast it into the fire. He afterward ground it to powder and strewed it upon the stream that descended from the mount. Thus was shown the utter worthlessness of the god which they had been worshiping. EP 223.1

The great leader summoned his guilty brother. Aaron endeavored to shield himself by relating the clamors of the people, that if he had not complied with their wishes he would have been put to death. “They said unto me, Make us gods, which shall go before us: for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him. And I said unto them, Whosoever hath any gold, let them break it off. So they gave it me: then I cast it into the fire, and there came out this calf.” He would lead Moses to believe that a miracle had been wrought, that the gold by supernatural power changed to a calf. But his excuses were of no avail. He was justly dealt with as the chief offender. EP 223.2

It was Aaron, “the saint of the Lord” (Psalm 106:16), that had made the idol and announced the feast. He had failed to check the idolaters in their heaven-daring purpose. He heard unmoved the proclamation before the molten image, “These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.” He had been with Moses on the mount and there beheld the glory of the Lord. It was he who had changed that glory into the similitude of an ox. He to whom God had committed the government of the people in the absence of Moses was found sanctioning rebellion. “The Lord was very angry with Aaron to have destroyed him.” Deuteronomy 9:20. But in answer to the intercession of Moses, his life was spared; and in penitence for his great sin, he was restored to the favor of God. EP 223.3

How Aaron Encouraged Rebellion

If Aaron had had courage to stand for the right, he could have prevented that apostasy. If he had unswervingly maintained his own allegiance to God and had reminded the people of their solemn covenant with God, the evil would have been checked. But his compliance emboldened them to go to greater lengths in sin than had before entered their minds. EP 224.1

To justify himself, Aaron endeavored to make the people responsible for his weakness in yielding to their demand; but notwithstanding this, they were filled with admiration of his gentleness and patience. But Aaron’s yielding spirit and desire to please had blinded his eyes to the enormity of the crime he was sanctioning. His course cost the life of thousands. In contrast was the course of Moses. While faithfully executing God’s judgments, he showed that the welfare of Israel was dearer to him than prosperity, honor, or life. EP 224.2

God would have His servants prove their loyalty by faithfully rebuking transgression, however painful that act may be. Those who are honored with a divine commission are not to aim at self-exaltation or shun disagreeable duties, but to perform God’s work with unswerving fidelity. EP 224.3

The insubordination which Aaron had permitted, if not speedily crushed, would run riot in wickedness and involve the nation in ruin. By terrible severity the evil must be put away. Moses called to the people, “Who is on the Lord’s side? let him come unto me.” Those who had not joined the apostasy were to take their position at the right; those who were guilty but repentant, at the left. It was found that the tribe of Levi had taken no part in the idolatrous worship. From among other tribes there were great numbers who now signified their repentance. But a large company, mostly the “mixed multitude,” persisted in their rebellion. In the name of “the Lord God of Israel,” Moses now commanded those who had kept themselves clear of idolatry to gird on their swords and slay all who persisted in rebellion. “And there fell of the people that day about three thousand men.” The ringleaders in wickedness were cut off, but all who repented were spared. EP 224.4

Men are to beware how they judge and condemn their fellowmen; but when God commands them to execute His sentence upon iniquity, He is to be obeyed. Those who performed this painful act thus manifested their abhorrence of rebellion and idolatry. The Lord honored their faithfulness by bestowing special distinction upon the tribe of Levi. EP 225.1

That the divine government might be maintained, justice must be visited upon the traitors. Yet even here God’s mercy was displayed: He granted freedom of choice and opportunity for repentance to all. Only those were cut off who persisted in rebellion. EP 225.2

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