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According to the Midrash, and some texts of the Kabbalah, ( I don't remember the exact sources), when the Jewish people are described as "seeing Gd's feet", what they saw, was the Merkava (chariot) from Ezekiel. On one of the sides of the Chariot is a bull. That bull represents Mercy. And since they believed Moshe to have died, they were hoping for the Gd ...


7

For starters: anything about idol worship is going to sound a bit weird to us today. There are a couple of conjectures out there; the simplest is that cattle were a sign of prosperity (you use them to work, and they give you food), so an idol of that form was very popular. (I'm told we also find it in archeological digs.) Note that 500 years later, King ...


6

One answer I learned, heavily steeped in aggadah, was that there was no intent to build a calf. One of the things thrown into the molten gold was something that had the words "aleh shor" written on it, which was previously used to raise Joseph's bones from the Nile (as Joseph was referred to as an ox, or compared to, I forget) so a cow form arose. That is ...


2

Rashi says in his commentary on Exodus 32:20 there were different punishments for different levels of sin. People who were warned before witnesses were killed by the sword, as was done by an Idolatrous city, (Deut. 13:16). Others who acted before witnesses without warning were killed in a plague, (Ex. 32:35). Others who acted without witness or warning were ...



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