They have been quick to turn away1 from what I commanded them and have made themselves an idol2 cast in the shape of a calf.3 They have bowed down to it and sacrificed4 to it and have said, 'These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of Egypt.'59
"I have seen these people," the LORD said to Moses, "and they are a stiff-necked6 people.
Now leave me alone7 so that my anger may burn against them and that I may destroy8 them. Then I will make you into a great nation."911
But Moses sought the favor10 of the LORD his God. "O LORD," he said, "why should your anger burn against your people, whom you brought out of Egypt with great power and a mighty hand?1112
Why should the Egyptians say, 'It was with evil intent that he brought them out, to kill them in the mountains and to wipe them off the face of the earth'?12 Turn from your fierce anger; relent and do not bring disaster13 on your people.
Remember14 your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel, to whom you swore by your own self:15 'I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars16 in the sky and I will give your descendants all this land17 I promised them, and it will be their inheritance forever.' "
Then the LORD relented18 and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened.
Moses turned and went down the mountain with the two tablets of the Testimony19 in his hands.20 They were inscribed21 on both sides, front and back.
The tablets were the work of God; the writing was the writing of God, engraved on the tablets.2217
When Joshua23 heard the noise of the people shouting, he said to Moses, "There is the sound of war in the camp."
Moses replied: "It is not the sound of victory, it is not the sound of defeat; it is the sound of singing that I hear."