Let us look into the comment of Reb Yitzchak of Slonim.
Bothered by the question of where the Israelites got the gold to make the calf, the commentators all remind us that the people had left Egypt laden with gold and jewellery from the Egyptians, modest compensation for their generations of enslavement in Egypt.
Reb Yitzchak found it all very fascinating and very strange.
“The generation of the desert,” he remarked, “was prepared to give up its silver and gold to make a god. How different is our generation. In our age people are anxious to give up God in order to make silver and gold.”