Terror in the Wilderness

followFollow Me: Law[1]

Observations as I follow God through the Chronological Bible

Exodus 19:24-20:21 [2]

As soon as Moses entered God’s presence, God told him to go back down and warn the people to respect God’s boundaries. He also told Moses to return with Aaron. Moses returned to the bottom of the mountain to remind the people they must not cross the boundary lest they die, but the people had vacated the area around the mountain. Moses saw them standing afar off.

Before Moses returned with Aaron, God spoke the Ten Commandments in a loud voice.[3] Everyone in the church heard God speak and lived, but the church is consumed with the fear of death. The leaders of the church gathered around Moses for a meeting. They acknowledged that they heard God speak and didn’t die, but they were sure if God kept talking to them they would die. They were afraid the fire would sweep down the mountain and kill them.

They believed God would kill them, but they did not believe God would kill Moses. They wanted Moses to approach the fire and come back and tell them what God said. Moses tried to comfort the people. According to Moses, the terror they experienced in their first encounter with God would instill the fear of God so they would not sin. Moses communicated God’s thoughts but this comment is Moses opinion. Being terrified of God never stopped the church from sinning. Within weeks Aaron will lead the people into a grievous sin, and what the people believed will happen. Many will die.

God heard what the people said and approved.[4] From this point on God spoke to Moses and Moses spoke God’s desires to the church. God’s pleasure with the churches request to deal with him through a man foreshadows the future. The seed God promised Adam and Eve when they sinned would come through the lineage of Abraham and a covenant of Grace. That seed/man would be far superior to Moses and a covenant of law.

Jesus would not only be a man but the very image of God in the earth. He would make a way for whosoever will to draw near to God without the fear of death. His love is a much stronger incentive to refrain from sin than the terror the church experienced when they received the law of God.

[1] In 1 Corinthians 10 Paul warns us that the things that happened in the wilderness were recorded as a warning to the church because Moses preached the same gospel about Jesus that was preached after Jesus resurrection. For this reason Israel/Jacob will be called the church in this series.

[2] All Scripture is from the NKJ Bible unless otherwise noted.

[3] Deuteronomy 5:22

[4] Deuteronomy 5:28

About Teena Myers

Teena Myers is the Chairman of Southern Christian Writers, a freelance writer and author of three books.
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