In the quick snapshot, Moses is on top of the mountain talking to God, and just got the two tablets of the law. Meanwhile, at the bottom of the mountain, the people of God are getting impatient and want something to worship. They donate their gold to make an idol. God notices, gets ticked, and wants Moses to go straighten out Moses’s people. Moses responds by reminding God that they are God’s people.
We have an interesting story here. It’s one of multiple times something like this happens. (Genesis 17-18, Jesus on the cross) It presents a challenge for us today. When God declares that some of God’s people are not God’s people, or that some people should die, or that the people have given up on God, who speaks back?
I think most of us have in mind the response of God to Job when we think about it, but this story presents a different way forward. Are we willing to speak up for God’s people to God? Even when the people of God get it wrong, are we willing to speak up for them? Who has spoken up for you, and for us?