We have in my family that which we call “The Marxhausen Exaggeration.” My whole family has got this genetic code which they got from my bride and I. My bride would probably tell you that her exaggeration trait was not in her genetic code, but a learned behavior she got from me. Either way, it was passed down from our oldest to our youngest and I’m suspecting even my grandchildren will carry this peculiarity.
Simply described this “Marxhausen Exaggeration” is taking something so minuscule and insignificant and blowing it up into magnificent proportions. In other words, we have this uncanny way of fabricating any situation, any story, into something that is totally distorted, inflated, overdone and overdrawn. What can I say… it’s a gift. It generally works on everyone else, but within our own ranks it’s not very effective.
Why do I tell you this little family secret? Because I found someone in the Bible who also possessed this gift. His name was Aaron. He was the brother to Moses. There was a time that Moses was up on top of the mountain in the presence of God for an extended period of time. The people of Israel became restless and demanded that Aaron make for them a god they could worship.
So Aaron had all the people bring their gold ornaments and jewelry. He melted all the gold down and then we’re told he…
“… fashioned it with a graving tool, and made it into a molten calf…” Exodus 32:4
The people were elated and started worshipping this inanimate object, much to the displeasure of God. God sent Moses down from the mountain to handle the situation and when Moses arrived he was furious. He questioned his brother Aaron as to whatever would possess him to do such a thing.
Aaron’s answer was pretty straightforward at first. He reminded Moses how obstinate the people of Israel were and that they were “prone to evil” (Exodus 32:2). He even told Moses how the people asked for a god to worship and how he had told them to bring all their gold to him. But the real problem came when Aaron expanded his story to utter these words…
“So they gave it to me, and I threw it into the fire, and out came this calf.” Exodus 32:24
Can you almost hear Moses? “So, let me see if I really get this. The people wanted a god, so you told them to bring all their gold to you. You threw it into the fire and melted it down and “wallah” out came a golden calf. Can I just tell you, I may have been born at night, but not last night.”
Here’s my word of encouragement for you today: There’s no hiding anything from God. Telling the truth to Him is of great importance. Don’t exaggerate your sin. Come clean and let Him totally cleanse you, forgive you and restore you. That my friends, is not an exaggeration.
Make us whole again. In Jesus name we ask this, Amen.
Rev. Dr. MM Marxhausen