Search the Bible
* powered by Bible Study Tools

Exodus 32:20

    Exodus 32:20 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it in the fire, and ground it to powder, and strawed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it in the fire, and ground it to powder, and strewed it on the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it with fire, and ground it to powder, and strewed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And he took the ox which they had made, burning it in the fire and crushing it to powder, and he put it in the water and made the children of Israel take a drink of it.

    Webster's Revision

    And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it with fire, and ground it to powder, and strewed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it.

    World English Bible

    He took the calf which they had made, and burnt it with fire, ground it to powder, and scattered it on the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And he took the calf which they had made, and burnt it with fire, and ground it to powder, and strewed it upon the water, and made the children of Israel drink of it.

    Clarke's Commentary on Exodus 32:20

    He took the calf - and burnt - and ground it to powder, etc. - How truly contemptible must the object of their idolatry appear when they were obliged to drink their god, reduced to powder and strewed on the water! "But," says an objector, "how could gold, the most ductile of all metals, and the most ponderous, be stamped into dust and strewed on water?" In Deuteronomy 9:21, this matter is fully explained. I took, says Moses, your sin, the calf which ye had made, and burnt it with fire, that is, melted it down, probably into ingots, or gross plates, and stamped it, that is, beat into thin laminae, something like our gold leaf, and ground it very small, even until it was as small as dust, which might be very easily done by the action of the hands, when beat into thin plates or leaves, as the original words אכת eccoth and דק dak imply. And I cast the dust thereof into the brook, and being thus lighter than the water, it would readily float, so that they could easily see, in this reduced and useless state, the idol to which they had been lately offering Divine honors, and from which they were vainly expecting protection and defense. No mode of argumentation could have served so forcibly to demonstrate the folly of their conduct, as this method pursued by Moses.

    Barnes' Notes on Exodus 32:20

    See Deuteronomy 9:21. What is related in this verse must have occupied some time and may have followed the rebuke of Aaron. The act was symbolic, of course. The idol was brought to nothing and the people were made to swallow their own sin (compare Micah 7:13-14).

    Wesley's Notes on Exodus 32:20

    32:20 He burnt the calf - Melted it down, and then filed it to dust; and that the powder to which it was reduced might he taken notice of throughout the camp, he strawed it upon the water which they all drank of. That it might appear that an idol is nothing in the world, he reduced this to atoms, that it might be as near nothing as could be.