March 18, 2014 by Chris French
At Mt. Sinai God made an agreement with the nation He had just brought out of Egypt. He would be their God and bless them beyond measure, but to remain His people they would have to follow His rules. He outlines these rules at Mt. Sinai.
While these rules are in the Old Testament and were the ways their sins were rolled forward and thus don’t apply to New Testament believers as ways to be saved there are some principles that we need to pay attention to. For example, God demands that Israel not use His name flippantly. He owns His Name just like Starbucks owns their name. In a sense His Name has been copyrighted and we can only use it in the way that He has approved. How do the other laws apply to us today?
When He gave the Law though it wasn’t Him saying, “Do these things and I’ll adopt you.” He’s already adopted them and now He’s saying, “These things are what is best for you.” You can’t separate the heart of the Father from the Law. These laws were meant to bless, not oppress, just like a human father would set up boundaries that would benefit his children.
If you lived on a busy highway and had small children would it not be wise to build a fence so they didn’t wander into the road? You’ve purposefully restricted their freedom, but you did it to keep them safe. That’s exactly what God has done with His laws, Old Testament and New. He has restricted our freedoms, but these restrictions are in place to bless us. What command to abstain from or to act on feels like a burden to you? Do you see how it could actually be a blessing? A boundary set up to bless you.
This week we’re back into The Saga of the Bible. Today’s passage was Exodus 19-20. To download the reading guide click here.