Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Exodus 33-35 Do not depart from the tent

From Exodus 33-35

Ex 33.1-6 Story; The people are commanded to go to the promised land, but the LORD will not go up among them
Ex 33.7-11 Story; Moses and Joshua speak with God at the tent of meeting
Ex 33.12-23 Story; Moses pleads that the LORD remain with them and the LORD makes all his goodness pass him
Ex 34.1-9 Story; The LORD writes on the second set of tablets, and passes by him describing his goodness
Ex 34.10-28 Law-Sin; The Covenant Renewed, Various laws reinstated
* Destroy all other forms of worship
* Do not make any gods of cast metal (cf. Golden Calf)
* Feast of Unleavened Bread
* Firstborn to be dedicated to the LORD
* Sabbath observance
* Feast of Weeks
* Feast of Ingathering
Ex 34.29-35 Story; The Shining face of Moses
Ex 35.1-29 Story; Moses passes on the LORD’s commands to Israel, including an offering for the tabernacle
Ex 35.30-35 Story; The LORD equips craftsmen for the construction of the Tabernacle

Passage and Comments
Today I would like to comment of a passage that was brought to my attention by a Charismatic Anglican named Simon Ponsonby. Check it out.
[7] Now Moses used to take the tent and pitch it outside the camp, far off from the camp, and he called it the tent of meeting. And everyone who sought the LORD would go out to the tent of meeting, which was outside the camp. [8] Whenever Moses went out to the tent, all the people would rise up, and each would stand at his tent door, and watch Moses until he had gone into the tent. [9] When Moses entered the tent, the pillar of cloud would descend and stand at the entrance of the tent, and the LORD[F1] would speak with Moses. [10] And when all the people saw the pillar of cloud standing at the entrance of the tent, all the people would rise up and worship, each at his tent door. [11] Thus the LORD used to speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. When Moses turned again into the camp, his assistant Joshua the son of Nun, a young man, would not depart from the tent. (Ex 33:7-11)
His observation was that Joshua remained at the tent. He also asked a question, why didn’t everyone hang out with God at the tent? I will pick up on this aspect later on in the Jesus bite section, for now I also need to highlight some of the more significant aspects of these chapters. Consider;
[18] Moses said, “Please show me your glory.” [19] And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name ‘The LORD.’ And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy. (Ex 33:18-19)
So the LORD says his ‘goodness’ will pass Moses by. What does the LORD mean by his goodness? Some sort of ethical quality that manifests itself somehow?... Read on...
[6] The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, [7] keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children's children, to the third and the fourth generation.” (Ex 34:6-7)
This is the LORD’s goodness;
merciful and gracious,
slow to anger,
abounding in covenant love and faithfulness,
keeping covenant love for thousands,
forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin,

will not clear the guilty,
visiting iniquity of the fathers on their descendants.

That about sums up the LORD’s goodness don’t you think?

Story of Israel
The description of God's character is displayed again and again through God's dealings with Israel. There are those he chooses to display his steadfast love, and others he wipes out because he has not favored them.

Story of Jesus
Returning now to my comment of Joshua and the observation why more people didn't meet and remain with God at the tent. When Jesus died the curtain that represented the barrier between God and man was torn down. No barrier separates us from him. There is nothing separating us from him. This was the work of Jesus blood on the cross. Spend time with the LORD. Don't leave it to the few. We need to keep spending time with the LORD and thank Jesus for the entry pass he has given us.