Greetings in the name of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
And you will be my kingdom of priests, my holy nation.’ (Exodus 19:6)
Moses saw again his father-in-law, and spent a good time with His wife and two children. Not just Moses, all of the people of Israelites had a good time with plenty of food from heaven and water from the rock. They even defeated the Amalekities and their warriors although they were just a bunch of ex-slaves, who had no training for any weapons and any military disciples. Upon this surprise attach of the Amalelite’s warriors, they actually united and came to God while fully trusting God. What a change! They used to complain and argue against Moses and to God. It was in fact a whining like a child before a parent. They found it was not time to whining. They knew and experience the mighty hand of God, which made them come to God while trusting God. God gave them the first huge victory from the impossibility. It was the first opportunity for them to search for God and trusted Him before the impossibility, which was the faith that truly pleased God.
“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1) Yes, faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen. That is, faith is for future and our confidence for the future that our hope will come true in Him. Then how do we assure that our confidence is true? The evidence is our faith in Him. Although we cannot see and touch our faith, the faith itself is the proof about what we hope for will actually happen including something impossible. If we only believe what is possible in our eyes, then is our faith truly faith? Precisely speaking, if we only believe what will happen in our eyes, we believe our eyes. If so, we’d better to question about our faith. It is not faith because we trust our own eyes. Faith is our assurance about what we do not see, but we believe.
It was exactly two months after the Israelites left Egypt. The people of Israel arrived in the wilderness of Sinai. After breaking camp at Rephidim, they came to the wilderness of Sinai and set up camp there at the base of Mount Sinai. Then Moses climbed the mountain to appear before God.
The LORD called to him from the mountain and said, “Give these instructions to the family of Jacob; announce it to the descendants of Israel: ‘You have seen what I did to the Egyptians. You know how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. Now if you will obey me and keep my covenant, you will be my own special treasure from among all the peoples on earth; for all the earth belongs to me. And you will be my kingdom of priests, my holy nation.’ This is the message you must give to the people of Israel.” (Exodus 19:4-6)
God truly loved the people of Israel. Whenever there is an opportunity, God told what they should do – “obey and keep My commands.” God again and again promised His blessings that be only reserved for His people. So Moses returned from the mountain and called together the elders of the people and told them everything the LORD had commanded him. And all the people responded together, “We will do everything the LORD has commanded.” So Moses brought the people’s answer back to the LORD. Everything was really good. The people of Israel said with one voice, “We will do everything God has commanded.”
God knew that they were not fully trusted although they said with one voice that they would obey and keep God’s commands. As Moses came back and told what the people said. Then God told Moses, “Go down and prepare the people for my arrival. Consecrate them today and tomorrow, and have them wash their clothing. Be sure they are ready on the third day, for on that day the LORD will come down on Mount Sinai as all the people watch. Mark off a boundary all around the mountain. (Exodus 19:10-12a) Warn the people, ‘Be careful! Do not go up on the mountain or even touch its boundaries. Anyone who touches the mountain will certainly be put to death. No hand may touch the person or animal that crosses the boundary; instead, stone them or shoot them with arrows. They must be put to death.’
Yes, God decided to show up to the people of Israel. Of course, nobody could not see God because the absolutely Holiness of God could not coexist with the sin of the people. If happened, it immediately meant death. God asked them to:
1. Consecrate them for three days
Why three days? The people of Israel had a bad habit of forgetting. They forgot the miracle of parting the Red Sea in three day, and they complained to God.
How about us? Are we different from the people of Israel? This question should be the reminder of our nature. Good three days are often enough to shift our eyes from Jesus to the world. The taste of the world is so seductive that in three days, our hearts can be easily melt down and drowned by slowly forgetting God, who is the real master of us and everything that we touch. Please continuously remind that three days of our earthly comfort can be deadly to our faith and inner person.
2. Mark off a boundary all around the mountain
Again, the holiness of God could be mingled with the sins of ours. A clearly separation was must to prevent them from being destroyed before God’s holiness. This separation was for their protection. God loved them, and wanted keeping them alive by not being touched by His Holiness, which meant death due to the sins of the people of Israel. Again and again, God demonstrated His love toward the people of Israel. As a parent loves his/her children, God dearly loved the people of Israel. Yes, God was love.
Our God is the same God, who dearly loved the people of Israel. God dearly loves us. There is no other reason, but we are His children. However, there is a gap that cannot be crossed by our own might and effort because God’s holiness and our sins cannot coexist. Thus, God provided a way to come to Him and to be with Him forever, which is Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the only way that allows us to approach to God although we are full of sins. Why? Jesus paid them all by His own blood, which is His own death on cross for our sins. Since His sacrifice for all our sins, we now can come to God without fear of eternal death before His Holiness because all our sins are forgiven by the blood of Jesus Christ. Now, we can come and united with God as His eternal children. This is the Gospel, the Good News to all of us. We are truly blessed. The people of Israel saw the shadow of this eternal forgiveness and blessings of God’s mercy, grace and love, but we are truly enjoying this blessing from now till forever as long as we truly believe Jesus is our savior. Praise God, who dearly loves us, His children from now to eternity.
Through Christ Jesus, God has blessed the Gentiles with the same blessing he promised to Abraham, so that we who are believers might receive the promised Holy Spirit through faith. (Galatians 3:14)