golden calf

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golden calf

That which is given inordinate or unworthy praise, worship, or reverence. A reference to an idol mentioned in Exodus 32:4 of the Bible, created and worshipped by the Israelites in the absence of Moses, which was considered blasphemous in God's eyes. It has become apparent that wealth and power have become the golden calves of this country, the attainment of which people prioritize with slavish devotion.
See also: calf, golden
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

a golden calf

something, especially wealth, as an object of excessive or unworthy worship.
In the Bible, the golden calf was a statue of gold in the shape of a calf, made by Aaron in response to the Israelites' plea for a god while they awaited Moses' return from Mount Sinai, where he was receiving the Ten Commandments (Exodus, chapter 32).
See also: calf, golden
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
Clearly the establishing of the golden calves and their shrines was a sin, but it is not so clear that they were actually idol worship, and seemed to function more as a replacement for the Temple, a structure dedicated to God.
John Stapleford's book, Bulls, Bears, and Golden Calves, provides a useful overview of economic analysis and covers a variety of important public policy issues--from a Christian perspective.
The Buddhist would want to expand the definition of idolatry from just golden calves and such to include the concept of anyone's name, for example.
If we continue to promote the idea that we will raise the Nepalese poor out of their misery and if we suggest they give up their traditional beliefs and rely on golden calves that are losing credibility in the West, we only substitute idols that are more insidious than those they are meant to replace.
The background of this aspect of the Golden Calf story may be, of course, a claim by the priests of Bethel and Dan (denied by the priests of Jerusalem) that the golden calves in their respective temples had been divinely fabricated.
The golden calves of 1 Kings 12 are held to be images of the deity rather than pedestals on which the deity was enthroned.
"Leak" won four Golden Calves last year, the Dutch version of the Oscar, for best director, screenplay, film and actor (Victor Low).