Original Research

The destruction of the golden calf (Ex 32:20): A materials science perspective

Tarcicio Gaitán Briceño, Emigdio Mendoza Fandiño, Piedad Gañán Rojo
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 42, No 1 | a2175 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v42i1.2175 | © 2021 Piedad Ganan, Tarcicio Gaitán, Emigdio Mendoza | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 14 October 2020 | Published: 20 April 2021

About the author(s)

Tarcicio Gaitán Briceño, School of Philosophy, Theology and Humanities, Faculty of Theology, Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana, Medellín, Colombia
Emigdio Mendoza Fandiño, School of Engineering, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana, Medellín, Colombia
Piedad Gañán Rojo, School of Engineering, Faculty of Chemical Engineering, Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana, Medellín, Colombia


Share this article

Bookmark and Share

Abstract

One of the most fascinating and heavily debated episodes involving gold in the Old Testament is the destruction of the golden calf described in Exodus 32:20. This study considers, for the first time, this episode from a materials science perspective. Textual analysis and experimental results indicate that it is plausible to make a gold mixture fit for later human consumption by using the three steps described in the passage. The results thus suggest that Exodus 32:20 could be an ancient reference to the most commented-upon materials processes of our day: reduce the size of matter through a top-down approach.

Intradisciplinary and/or interdisciplinary implications: This article brings for the first time an approach between theological analysis and a support by materials sciences to evaluate the technical viability of the destruction of the golden calf described in Exodus 32:20. It impacts the obtained results and indicates the appropriate use of technical aspects of the writers of this text.


Keywords

exodus; golden calf; grinding; materials science; top-down approach.

Metrics

Total abstract views: 205
Total article views: 84


Crossref Citations

No related citations found.