Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.
Exodus 19:1-3a (NIV)
On the first day of the third month after the Israelites left Egypt—on that very day—they came to the Desert of Sinai. After they set out from Rephidim, they entered the Desert of Sinai, and Israel camped there in the desert in front of the mountain. Then Moses went up to God,
Exodus 19:1-3a (MSG)
Three months after leaving Egypt the Israelites entered the Wilderness of Sinai. They followed the route from Rephidim, arrived at the Wilderness of Sinai, and set up camp. Israel camped there facing the mountain. As Moses went up to meet God,
“In the third month after the children of Israel had left the land of Egypt, the very same day, they came into the Wilderness of Sinai. When they moved out from Rephidim, they came to the Wilderness of Sinai and they camped there; Israel camped at the base of the mountain [of Sinai]. Moses went up to God [on the mountain],” -AMPLIFIED
Three months, after their escape from Egypt and Pharaoh, the people of Israel finally arrived at the Wilderness of Sinai. They set up camp at the foot of the mountain and Moses went up to have a one-on-one session with God.
The Israelites arrival at Sinai marked an important occasion for Israel and their relationship with Jehovah. It was here that they would be brought into a national covenant with God. It was here that they would begin a personal relationship with the Almighty. It was also here that they would receive the Ten Commandments.
First we see Moses, the leader, going up to have a meeting with God. Moses went up, but we find God starting the conversation. “As Moses went up to meet God, God called down to him from the mountain: “Speak to the House of Jacob, tell the People of Israel: ‘You have seen what I did to Egypt and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to me. If you will listen obediently to what I say and keep my covenant, out of all peoples you’ll be my special treasure. The whole Earth is mine to choose from, but you’re special: a kingdom of priests, a holy nation.” -Exodus 19:3-6a (MSG)
We find God addressing a few items of business:
1.) You saw what I did to Egypt and what I am capable of doing.
2.) It was I who carried you out and brought you unto me.
3.)If you will listen and be obedient to do what I say, keeping my covenant, out of all the peoples of the Earth you will be my special treasure.
4.) All the Earth is mine, but I have chosen you to be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.
Then God told Moses, “This is what I want you to tell the People of Israel.” So that is what Moses did; he went down to the people and shared with them what Jehovah had said. Their response? “The people were unanimous in their response: “Everything God says, we will do.” Moses took the people’s answer back to God.” -Exodus 19:8 (MSG)
Together, as one, the people in agreement said, “We will do everything that God says.” At this moment in time they agreed to listen to God, to be obedient to God and to be set aside for God’s purposes. They chose to become this kingdom of priests for God. They decided that they would accept God’s appointment to be a holy nation for His sake. (Time would tell if they would stick to this promise.)
New beginnings fill us with excitement and hope. I am sure that the children of Israel were excited too at this moment. They were to be set apart for God and His purposes. They were a special people, God had said. It is important that we too realize the need to remain steadfast in our relationship with God. With single-mindness, let us faithfully hold onto God and His promises. We too are set-apart for God and His purposes. Let us be listening to His voice and obediently doing what He has called us to do.
Lord, I know that I have been set apart for you and your purposes. Help me to be obedient and listen to you and your voice. I want to be found faithful. I want to be found steadfast. Help me to remain true to you. Have your way and your will in my life. Let my light always shine bright for you. I want to be found a faithful servant when I finally stand before your throne in your presence. Help me to always do my very best for you.