Tag: ten commands

The Fear of the Lord!

Scripture reading for January 26: Exodus 19-20

God carried the whole nation of Israel out of slavery in Egypt with a display of His power in the plagues.  The Israelites were protected and experienced God’s deliverance as they walked out of Egypt, laden down with silver and gold and other valuables.  God’s presence guided them in the pillar of fire and in the cloud.  God provided miraculously for them again and again in sending the manna and quail and then providing water from the rock.  These children understood the mercy of God, but did not fear Him!  This holy fear is a foundation for wisdom.  (Proverbs 1:7)

God led the children of Israel to Mt. Sinai where He gave instructions through Moses to the people.  They were to refrain from sexual relations, wash their clothes, and consecrate themselves to prepare to hear God’s voice speaking to them.  (Exodus 19:10-16)  On the morning of the third day, there was thunder and lightning, a thick cloud, and a loud trumpet blast.  When the trumpet sounded, everyone in the camp trembled with fear!  (Exodus 20:18-19)  The people begged Moses to speak to them, but did not want God to speak for they feared they might die!  Why would God bring these special people out of slavery to do this to them?

God’s stated purpose was to instill in them the “fear of God to keep them from sinning.” (Exodus 20:20)   The ten commandments that Moses received revealed sin in the heart of man.  They are the mirror for our soul showing our guilt of breaking His law.  They cannot save us from the penalty but drive us to God for mercy through His Son, Jesus Christ.

As you read Exodus 20:1-17 today, ask the Lord to reveal his holiness to you and open your eyes to your need for holy fear.  Look at each commandment and see how these commands help us to love God and love our neighbor.  If you are breaking any of them, take time and confess with repentance.  Thank God that Jesus Christ fully kept God’s law and that His righteousness is now ours by faith!

“Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid.  God has come to test you, so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning.” Exodus 20:20

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Law of Love!

Scripture reading for February 23th: Deuteronomy 5-7

Moses preached a second message to the children of Israel in the year before he died.  This message began in Deuteronomy 5 and goes through chapter 26.  You might say that Moses was a long-winded preacher, but he had learned much about God through his experience of leading the people and falling face-down before the Lord.  He wanted to impress the basics on these who would go in to possess the promised land so that they would be prosperous and successful in their walk with God.

Moses began his message by calling for Israel to “hear”.  Faith comes by hearing the word of God. (Romans 10:17)  They first needed to “hear” that what happened in the past at Mt. Sinai was not just for their dead ancestors, but for them!  (Deuteronomy 5:1-4)  When we read or hear the word of God, our hearts need to be open to “hear” with the idea that God is speaking to us as well.  We are descendants of  Israel by faith in Jesus Christ! (Romans 11:17-18)

Moses then restated the ten commandments.  The only major change from 40 years earlier was his commentary on the fourth commandment, Sabbath keeping.  Here he emphasized keeping the Sabbath to remember their deliverance from Egypt.  (Deuteronomy 5:12-15)  In the Exodus account, Moses had emphasized creation’s pattern where God worked six days and then rested on the seventh. (Exodus 20:8-11)

After restating the Law, Moses gave them further insight.  “Hear O Israel:  The Lord our God, the Lord is One.  Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.  These commandments today are to be upon your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.  Write them on the door-frames of your houses and on your gates.” (Deuteronomy 6:4-9)

The law of God is all about love because God is love.  If we love God, we will obey Him from our heart!  (1st John 4:16)  Jesus Christ repeated this in summarizing the greatest commandment: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.” (Matthew 22:37-38)

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