Today Jonathan shared with us the story of Adam and Eve in the garden, with the breakdown of trust and obedience that led first to their expulsion, then a downward trajectory for human society as their firstborn son became a murderer. This is not a story that we can park comfortably in the mists of mythical pre-history, but one that speaks here and now to each one of us – as the issues of trust and the nature of our relationship with God affect us every day.
Today Jonathan based his talk on the golden calves that appear twice in the old Testament – once when Moses ascended Mount Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments, and a second time 500 years later when king Jeroboam (king of the northern kingdom of Israel) sought to persuade his people not to go to Jerusalem in order to worship God. The main problem here was not with the calves as such, but with the spirit of independence that led to them – the spirit that suggested that we can choose our own way to seek and to worship God; our own way to present God to the people.
So here is a warning to us all not to set up for ourselves images of our own making in place of the God who has revealed himself to us.