As Israel travelled through the wilderness, they drew closer and closer to Horeb, the Mountian of God.
It filled the entire southern sky. This grisly rough and frowning mountain whose summit was covered in angry cloud.
It was not green .. it was hard, solid, unrelenting, granite rock alive with thunder and lightening.
“There!” cried Moses over the noise of the thunder..”There is the place where I saw the burning bush, that did not burn! It’s there! where I first met God.”
“He is coming to you in thick cloud, thunder and lightening, fire and smoke. For to ‘you’ He says:
“You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, I have born you forth on eagle wings and brought you to myself. If then, you shall obey my voice and keep my Covenant, you shall be my possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine. You shall be a Kingdom of priests, a holy nation.”
“Therefore,”said Moses, “Prepare for the Lord.
He is coming down upon this mountain in your sight.”
So Moses gave Israel these instructions..
“You must wash your clothes.
Have no sexual contact.
Build a fence around the base of the mountain, so that every living thing stays back.
For anyone who touches the mountain .. he will die!”
The morning of the third day broke out with violent lightening and thunder, and thick smoke bellowed out from the mountain .. for the Lord was descending upon it in fire.
Then a mighty sound like blast of a trumpet began, getting louder and louder by the minute, and the people pushed backward in fear!
“Moses they cried. You speak and we will hear. Do not allow God to speak to us or we will surely die.”
Moses answered, “Do not be afraid, for the Lord has come to test you, so that your awe for Him may keep you from sinning.”
But the people turned and ran further and further away.
Moses himself crossed the bordering fence and began to ascend into the darkness where God was.
Moses climbed the mountain alone!
Sometimes you may have to do the will of God apart from anyone else. Doing God’s Will is not always having the approval of men .. It can be a lonely trek into the darkness.
Then the Lord spoke to him out of the dark cloud these words.
Please read Exod 20:1-17.
The Words that God spoke to Moses we call..
THE TEN COMMANDMENTS.
Upon hearing these words, Moses descended the mountain and with great confidence spoke the Word of God . The people enthusiasticly replied, “All that He has spoken .. we will do! ”
Then Moses built an altar and sacrificed peace offerings and burnt offerings as a sign that God and His people were now bound by a Covenant together.
THE LORD WAS THEIR GOD .. THEY WERE HIS PEOPLE!!
Property rights were detailed and secured. Moral and Religious codes were given.
Justice was defined. He introduced the great ritual festivals of the people, by which they would keep their calendars thereafter were named.
God touched on the core of the covenant:
“IF YOU DO ‘ALL’ THAT I SAY, THEN ..
1. I WILL BE AN ENEMY TO YOUR ENEMIES.
2. AN ADVERSARY TO ALL YOUR ADVERSARIES.
3. I WILL BLESS YOUR BREAD AND YOUR WATER.
4. I WILL TAKE SICKNESS FROM YOU.
5. I WILL BE WITH YOU WHEREVER YOU GO.”
The law was given to Israel as a symbol of works to in order to grow closer to God.
Our approach to God today is through Jesus’ Blood sacrifice on the cross of Calvary.
The law is a system of works that brings bondage. Grace and mercy brings true freedom. The law is that which brings us to Christ. It shows our sin and a need of a Saviour.
We fully yield to the Holy Spirit to express his life in us.
We obey the Lord because we love and appreciate what he accomplished in His Death, and Resurrection.
A wagon wheel found on the bottom of the Red Sea in 1972.