ImmerseBeginnings NLT - Page 300


name from under heaven. Then I will make a mighty nation of your descendants, a nation larger and more powerful than they are.’
“So while the mountain was blazing with fire I turned and came down,
holding in my hands the two stone tablets inscribed with the terms of
the covenant. There below me I could see that you had sinned against
the Lord your God. You had melted gold and made a calf idol for yourselves. How quickly you had turned away from the path the Lord had
commanded you to follow! So I took the stone tablets and threw them to
the ground, smashing them before your eyes.
“Then, as before, I threw myself down before the Lord for forty days
and nights. I ate no bread and drank no water because of the great sin you
had committed by doing what the Lord hated, provoking him to anger. I
feared that the furious anger of the Lord, which turned him against you,
would drive him to destroy you. But again he listened to me. The Lord
was so angry with Aaron that he wanted to destroy him, too. But I prayed
for Aaron, and the Lord spared him. I took your s­ in—­the calf you had
­made—­and I melted it down in the fire and ground it into fine dust. Then
I threw the dust into the stream that flows down the mountain.
“You also made the Lord angry at Taberah, Massah, and ­Kibroth-
­hattaavah. And at ­Kadesh-­barnea the Lord sent you out with this command: ‘Go up and take over the land I have given you.’ But you rebelled
against the command of the Lord your God and refused to put your trust
in him or obey him. Yes, you have been rebelling against the Lord as long
as I have known you.
“That is why I threw myself down before the Lord for forty days and
­nights—­for the Lord said he would destroy you. I prayed to the Lord
and said, ‘O Sovereign Lord, do not destroy them. They are your own
people. They are your special possession, whom you redeemed from
Egypt by your mighty power and your strong hand. Please overlook the
stubbornness and the awful sin of these people, and remember instead
your servants Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. If you destroy these people, the
Egyptians will say, “The Israelites died because the Lord wasn’t able to
bring them to the land he had promised to give them.” Or they might say,
“He destroyed them because he hated them; he deliberately took them
into the wilderness to slaughter them.” But they are your people and your
special possession, whom you brought out of Egypt by your great strength
and powerful arm.’
“At that time the Lord said to me, ‘Chisel out two stone tablets like the first
ones. Also make a wooden A
­ rk—­a sacred chest to store them in. Come up
to me on the mountain, and I will write on the tablets the same words that
were on the ones you smashed. Then place the tablets in the Ark.’

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