About Jesus Steve Sweetman
This Chapter 24
Covenant Confirmed (ch. 24:1 - 18)
In verses 1 and 2 we see
God calling Moses back to the mountain.
Moses visited with God at least four times on this mountain.
This time will last through to Exodus 31.
Along with Moses would come Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, along with
the seventy elders of
Verse 2 says that Moses
would be the only man to actually come directly into the presence of
God. This reminds me of the
apostle. In Galatians 1 you
see that Paul learned the gospel directly from Jesus through revelation.
I believe Paul is the Moses of the New Testament.
In verse 3 and 4 we see
that Moses wrote down all that the Lord had told him and the people
agreed to obey the Lord. Now
I am uncertain what laws Moses wrote down and spoke to the Lord about.
They might well have been the laws in the last few chapters.
Verse 4 says that Moses
got up early in the morning and built and altar with twelve pillars,
representing the twelve tribes of Israel. Thee pillars were simply
piles of rocks.
Verse 5 we see that Moses
had some young men offer burnt offerings and fellowship offerings to the
Lord. Another word for
"fellowship" would be "peace" as in "peace
offerings". We need to
In verse 6 and 7 Moses
took half the blood from the animals that were just killed, poured half
in a bowl and half on the altar. He
read from the "Book of the Covenant".
Most scholars believe that to the laws that are from Exodus 20:22
to 23:19 is this "book of the covenant".
Moses read from the book and all the people agreed to obey them,
at least for the moment.
Verse 8 tells us that
Moses took the blood and sprinkled it on the people.
The question is, "what people did he sprinkle the blood
on?" He could not have
sprinkled the blood on a couple million Jews.
Most scholars feel that he sprinkled it on the seventy elders who
represented the people.
The last half of verse 8
is interesting. It reads,
"This is the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you
in accordance with all these words."
The words "all these words" refer to the Book of the
Covenant which again is what is written from Exodus 20:22 to 23:19.
It might also include the Ten Commandments found in Exodus 20:1
"This is the blood
of the covenant…" These
are the same words used by Jesus at the last supper, and what Paul
repeats in 1 Corinthians 11. Because
Jesus said these words, we know that He was linking the Old Covenant
with the New Covenant. All
the Covenants that God was involved in was ratified with blood.
Something or someone had to die in order for the Covenant to be
ratified. Death came into
the world due to Adam and Eve's sin, and the only way out of this death
was through death. The first death was the death of an animal to cover
Adam and Eve's nakedness. That
was in fact the first animal sacrifice.
From that point on, animals were sacrificed for sin, until Jesus
Himself was sacrifice. He
was the sacrifice to end all sacrifices.
In verses 9 through 11 we
note that Moses, Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and the seventy elders saw God.
We need to ask, '"what does this mean, especially in light
of Exodus 33:20 saying that no one can see God and live?"
I think these men saw God
from somewhat of a distance. They were not in His immediate presence
because in verse 12 God calls Moses into His immediate presence.
That being said, verse 11 says that God did not raise His hand
against them. Even if these
men saw something of God, God made it such that they would live and not
die. We do know that God
Under God's feet was a
pavement of sapphire – blue green – as clear as the sky.
Much has been said about this.
It is comparable to the sea of glass in the book of Revelation.
In verse 12 God calls
Moses up to the mountain into His immediate presence where He would give
him the law and the tablets. The
tablets had the Ten Commandments on them.
In verses 13 and 14 we
see Moses taking Joshua up the mountain, leaving the other men and the
elders at the bottom of the mountain.
We see in verse 15 the cloud covering the mountain.
This is called the "cloud of God's glory".
The cloud exudes who God is without seeing Him as He really is.
God is spirit and really can't be seen by human eyes, but we can
see the affects of God as He approaches the created world.
Verse 16 tells us that
the cloud covered the mountain for six days.
Moses was up there for six days before God spoke to him.
It was not until the seventh day that God began to speak to
Moses. That was probably a
very long six days for Moses.
In verse 17 the text
views God as a fire on top of the mountain.
The Bible often speaks of God as being a fire, or a consuming
fire. Fire seems to always
suggest cleansing from sin, or burning away the sin of man.
Fire is used also in judgment, as in the Lake
of Fire. This is one reason why
humanity can't get to close to God.
Man will burn up.
Verse 18 states that
Moses was on this mountain in the presence of God for forty days. The
number forty is one of those well known and important numbers in the
Bible. It rained for forty
days and forty nights in Noah's day.
Jesus was tempted for forty days.
The number forty is often in reference to testing.