Sunday, October 20, 2013

Miracles In The Wilderness Series - Lesson 23 - Israel At Mount Sinai - Part 2

Exodus 19:1-15:

As Moses descended Mt. Sinai with the message from the Lord, below the sea of Israelite tents grew larger with each step. The Creator of the Universe had chosen this place and Israel from among all the people of the earth.

Will Israel ever comprehend the magnitude of this moment?

If he reminds them of how the Lord God Almighty sustained them in the wilderness, almost as if He bore them here to Himself on eagles’ wings, then will they understand? Surely, by now all Israel recognizes His hand.

But, will they accept God’s terms? Will they humble themselves and truly become His special people, a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation?


Reaching the base of the mountain, Moses called together the elders of each tribe and conveyed the Lord’s terms:  Obeying God's voice and keeping His covenant. When the people heard, they cried out as one, “…All that the LORD has spoken we will do...”

This omnipotent God loved Israel with an everlasting love, but He knew leading a wandering nation necessitated cooperation, allegiance and respect. Israel had already proven to be an obstinate people, blaming Moses for every obstacle. They had to see Moses for who he was; Almighty God’s chosen vessel, mediator and leader. The only way they would fear God and accept Moses was indeed delivering the word of the Lord, was for God to allow Israel to eavesdrop on their conversation.

Therefore, He said to Moses, “Behold I come to you in the thick cloud that the people may hear when I speak with you, and believe you forever.” (Exodus 19:9)

The Lord of all the earth would speak audibly in three days.

However, our God is holy and too pure to look upon evil or sin (Habakkuk 1:13). None can see His face and live. The nature of God’s holiness is so pristine and powerful it will break out and consume any sin-cursed creature. Therefore, God gave strict, non-compromising rules for His visit.

Two days of consecration, bathing and washing their clothes while Moses constructed boundaries around Mount Sinai. God permitted no human or animal to touch the base of the mountain. If animal or human did step onto the mountain, God commanded their killing either by arrow or stoning. No human hand could contact them.

In our limited understanding, this seems harsh. But was it?

On the third day, these frail children of dust would hear God's voice. Were they ready? Are you?

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