Moses Part 12

Moses, the man of God

A study

Part 12

The Law & the Old Covenant at Mount Sinai

Exo.19 – 24

The children of Israel were delivered from the bondage of Egypt, on the very same day, when they sacrificed and applied the blood of the Passover lambs. After that God made all provisions for their wilderness journey. They were going to be established as a theocracy in the land of Canaan. In that land, God would dwell in their midst and rule over and bless all the nations of the earth through the children of Israel. (Exo.19: 5,6) This was the plan of God for His redeemed people. In fact this was the original plan of God for Adam. (Gen.1: 26-28) But nearly 2000 years after the failure of Adam, God through Abraham chose this nation of Israel to fulfill that same plan.

In the third month, after the children of Israel were gone forth out of the land of Egypt, came they into the wilderness of Sinai, and there, Israel camped before the mount. (Exo.19: 1,2) God, instead of taking His redeemed people directly to their destination, the land of Canaan, took them in the opposite direction, to Mount Sinai. They reached this mount after a three-month journey and then encamped there for almost one whole year. (Num.10: 11, 12)

Why did God do this? Let us see what exactly happened in this mount.

  1. God gave His LAW and all His instructions to His redeemed people (Exo.20 – 23)
  2. Then the children of Israel agreed to obey His Law (Exo.24: 3, 7)
  3. Then God made a COVENANT with them (Exo.24: 8)
  4. Then God commanded His redeemed people to make a sanctuary for Him,
  5. So that He may dwell among them. (Exo.25: 8, 9)

Only after accomplishing these things, God wanted to take His redeemed people to the Promised Land. In that Land, His people would honour Him and be obedient to His laws, and God would dwell among them, to rule over and bless all the nations of the earth through His people. (Exo.19: 5, 6) Whatever God had promised to Abraham in Gen.12: 1-3 was to be fulfilled through his descendants, this nation of Israel.

1) God gave His LAW and all His instructions to His redeemed people

On Mount Sinai God appeared in His power and holiness, and gave His Law to His people through Moses. God testified that, “the man Moses was very meek, above all the men who were upon the face of the earth. He is faithful in all mine house.” (Numb.12: 3, 7, Heb.3: 5) And the name “Moses” has become synonymous with “the Law.” Moses was the greatest of all the prophets of God. He received the revelations and wrote the first five books of the Bible. These books contain all the foundational truths revealed by God to man. All these 5 books put together is also called the Law.

Firstly God gave the Ten Commandments and then various additional instructions for the personal, family, social and religious life of His people. The Ten Commandments consist comprehensively of the complete righteous demands of God on man. Nearly 1500 years later when the Lord Jesus Christ was on the face of the earth, a lawyer, asked him a question, testing him, and saying, “Master, which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (Matt.22: 35-40) When we compare the Ten Commandments with these laws given by the Lord Jesus Christ, it can be noticed that the first five commandments can be summerised in the First Law (love the Lord) given here by our Lord. And the next five commandments can be summerised in the Second Law (love thy neighbour) given by our Lord. God expected His redeemed people to obey His Law.

In a similar manner, today if we are redeemed from the bondage of sin and Satan by putting our faith on the Lamb of God, then God expects us to be obedient to His Word. Faith without works (of obedience) is dead. (James 2: 17, 20, 26) A saved individual can enter into the Kingdom of the heavens, if and only if he does obey the will of the Father. (Matt.7: 21)

2) Then the children of Israel agreed to OBEY God’s Law (Exo.24: 3, 7)

And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, “All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.” And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, “All that the LORD hath said will we do, and be obedient.” (Exo.24: 3, 7) This was the initial reaction of the people, but later we find that they were continually rebelling against God. The first generation of the Israelites could not enter into the Promised Land, because of their unbelief and disobedience. The later generations also could not enjoy all the promises of God because of their continued disobedience.

A very similar thing happens to us today. Immediately after our salvation we are willing and eager to obey our Lord in all matters. But after sometime we grow cold and negligent. If we continue to be complacent and disobedient, we will not attain into all the heavenly purposes for which the Lord has saved us paying a very great price for us. Are we truthfully and wholeheartedly obedient to our Lord?

3) Then God made a COVENANT with them (Exo.24: 8)

Very often the terms, “old covenant” and “new covenant” are highly misunderstood. In Exodus Chapter 24, we find the beautiful account of God making His covenant with the children of Israel. This is the OLD COVENANT. And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, “Behold the blood of the covenant, which the LORD hath made with you concerning all these words.” (Exo.24: 8) Though they repeatedly disobeyed and rebelled against Him, God has promised to them that He will never break His covenant with them. (Lev.26: 44, 45, Psa.89: 34) Because of their rebellion, God has scattered them all over the face of the earth and severely punished them. As forewarned by Him in Lev.26 and other similar portions, God is very shortly going to bring upon them great tribulations such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. (Matt.24: 21) At that time they will repent and call upon the Lord Jesus Christ, whom they had rejected and crucified 2000 years ago. At that time the Lord Himself will appear in person and re-gather them and restore them to their Promised Land. Then He will also make a NEW COVENANT with them. (Jer.31: 31-33, Eze.20: 34-37, Eze.37: 21, 26, etc.) And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my COVENANT unto them, when I shall take away their sins. (Rom.11: 26, 27) This will happen just prior to the ushering-in of the coming glorious millennial kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ.

4) & 5) After making a covenant with the children of Israel in the wilderness, God commanded, “Let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them.” (Exo.25: 8)

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