The Israelites were in the wilderness almost a year when they came to mount Sinia
SHOW JOURNEY SLIDE
The Lord gave them the laws and commandments that would be the constitution of their nation
Moses was also given the exact design by God for the TABERNACLE
This was the place that God would dwell while travelling with Israel
The Tabernacle that was built in the desert teaches us very important things about the God we serve
The word Tabernacle has three different words used for it in Hebrew
First - mishkan, which means
‘a dwelling-place (God wants to dwell with us)
Second - ohel mo’ed,
or ‘tent of meeting” (God wants to meet with us - discussion-relationship)
Third - miqdosh,
which is a ‘holy place”(God is Holy, sacred, set apart)
The location was to be in the middle of God’s people
“Have the people of Israel build me a holy sanctuary so I can live among them. You must build this Tabernacle and its furnishings exactly according to the pattern I will show you.
PICTURE OF TABERNACLE
Moses received the design for this from God while on the MT Sinia
But something happened while Moses was on the Mountain speaking with God
Moses was on the Mt for 40 days
the number forty generally symbolized a period of testing, trial or probation.
As has been said, a faith that is not tested cannot be trusted.
Well these 40 days tested Israel’s faith.....
When the people saw how long it was taking Moses to come back down the mountain, they gathered around Aaron. “Come on,” they said, “make us some gods who can lead us. We don’t know what happened to this fellow Moses, who brought us here from the land of Egypt.” So Aaron said, “Take the gold rings from the ears of your wives and sons and daughters, and bring them to me.” All the people took the gold rings from their ears and brought them to Aaron. Then Aaron took the gold, melted it down, and molded it into the shape of a calf. When the people saw it, they exclaimed, “O Israel, these are the gods who brought you out of the land of Egypt!” Aaron saw how excited the people were, so he built an altar in front of the calf. Then he announced, “Tomorrow will be a festival to the LORD!”
The long wait allowed doubt and fear to come in
Aaron was not denying the God that brought them out of Egypt
He was creating a substitute that was in keeping with what the people wanted
He was trying to connect the false worship of the people with the God that brought them out
This is like people who say:
It’s all one God, Allah, Vishnu-Brahmah-Shiva, Yehweh, Jesus, Budda
They are all the same just different ways to worship
Be careful that we are not creating a God of our own design today
There is tremendous pressure on the church to adapt scripture so that it agrees with what society wants
A God that accommodates our likes and preferances
Major actions result:
This was the start of Israel’s rejection of God
They all died in the desert over the 40 years.
When our life’s answers do not come when we want them to
We can make mistakes
Marry wrong partners
Wrong jobs- can’t wait for the right one
Try to solve the issue or problem yourself instead of letting God deal with it
Because of Israel’s sin…God moved from the center to outside the camp
even though Israel repeatedly did not trust God
would run after any other God available
God was still merciful to them
“But our ancestors were proud and stubborn, and they paid no attention to your commands. They refused to obey and did not remember the miracles you had done for them. Instead, they became stubborn and appointed a leader to take them back to their slavery in Egypt. But you are a God of forgiveness, gracious and merciful, slow to become angry, and rich in unfailing love. You did not abandon them, even when they made an idol shaped like a calf and said, ‘This is your god who brought you out of Egypt!’ They committed terrible blasphemies. “But in your great mercy you did not abandon them to die in the wilderness. The pillar of cloud still led them forward by day, and the pillar of fire showed them the way through the night. You sent your good Spirit to instruct them, and you did not stop giving them manna from heaven or water for their thirst. For forty years you sustained them in the wilderness, and they lacked nothing. Their clothes did not wear out, and their feet did not swell!
Even though they were slapping God in the face
He still provided for them
Though he was separated from them due to their sin
Jesus would eventually come and be the sacrifice that would allow God to dwell with us/within us
The Tabernacle teaches us something about God’s Holiness
The first time God revealed himself to Israel at Mt Sinai, this is what it looked like
Mt Sinia Slide
Then the LORD told Moses, “Go down and prepare the people for my arrival. Consecrate them today and tomorrow, and have them wash their clothing. Be sure they are ready on the third day, for on that day the LORD will come down on Mount Sinai as all the people watch. Mark off a boundary all around the mountain. Warn the people, ‘Be careful! Do not go up on the mountain or even touch its boundaries. Anyone who touches the mountain will certainly be put to death. No hand may touch the person or animal that crosses the boundary; instead, stone them or shoot them with arrows. They must be put to death.’ However, when the ram’s horn sounds a long blast, then the people may go up on the mountain.”
Arron the priest’s sons were offering sacrifices in the Tabernacle and disregarded the rules of how to do it
An arrogant disregard for proper behavior, protocal and respect…in this case of God
Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu put coals of fire in their incense burners and sprinkled incense over them. In this way, they disobeyed the LORD by burning before him the wrong kind of fire, different than he had commanded. So fire blazed forth from the LORD’s presence and burned them up, and they died there before the LORD.
King David learned a hard lesson about disregarding respectful behavior around God
Bringing up the Ark of the covenant which had strict rules about how it should be transported
Should have been done on the Shoulders of Levites
SHOW SLIDE OF LEVITES
David was being cavalier
David was dancing and offering sacrifices and making his idea of what bringing the ark up should be like
David’s disrespect caused someone to die
But when they arrived at the threshing floor of Nacon, the oxen stumbled, and Uzzah reached out his hand and steadied the Ark of God. Then the LORD’s anger was aroused against Uzzah, and God struck him dead because of this. So Uzzah died right there beside the Ark of God.
We say that we are fortunate we do not serve that kind of God today....????
Let’s visit the New Testament
People were selling their property to support the new church in Jerusalem
More you gave....maybe the more spiritual and sacrificial you thought people would think of you
Ananias told everyone that the amount he gave was the amount he sold the land for
But…he kept some of it for him self
God showed this to Peter in his Spirit
Then Peter said, “Ananias, why have you let Satan fill your heart? You lied to the Holy Spirit, and you kept some of the money for yourself. The property was yours to sell or not sell, as you wished. And after selling it, the money was also yours to give away. How could you do a thing like this? You weren’t lying to us but to God!” As soon as Ananias heard these words, he fell to the floor and died. Everyone who heard about it was terrified.
Anianias’s wife Saphira not much smarter
About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. Peter asked her, “Was this the price you and your husband received for your land?” “Yes,” she replied, “that was the price.” And Peter said, “How could the two of you even think of conspiring to test the Spirit of the Lord like this? The young men who buried your husband are just outside the door, and they will carry you out, too.” Instantly, she fell to the floor and died. When the young men came in and saw that she was dead, they carried her out and buried her beside her husband.
Let’s look at something else in New Testament
Being cavalier around the Lord’s Supper (Communion)
For if you eat the bread or drink the cup without honoring the body of Christ, you are eating and drinking God’s judgment upon yourself. That is why many of you are weak and sick and some have even died. But if we would examine ourselves, we would not be judged by God in this way.
Disrespecting each other and obviously disregarding the principles of Christianity
Esteeming others better than yourself
Giving before you get
Loving your neighbor as yourself
God corrected this kind of disregard in the old testament around fasting
“Shout with the voice of a trumpet blast. Shout aloud! Don’t be timid. Tell my people Israel of their sins! Yet they act so pious! They come to the Temple every day and seem delighted to learn all about me. They act like a righteous nation that would never abandon the laws of its God. They ask me to take action on their behalf, pretending they want to be near me. ‘We have fasted before you!’ they say. ‘Why aren’t you impressed? We have been very hard on ourselves, and you don’t even notice it!’ “I will tell you why!” I respond. “It’s because you are fasting to please yourselves. Even while you fast, you keep oppressing your workers.
Goes on to say
You humble yourselves by going through the motions of penance, bowing your heads like reeds bending in the wind. You dress in burlap and cover yourselves with ashes. Is this what you call fasting? Do you really think this will please the LORD?
Describes what God wants
“No, this is the kind of fasting I want: Free those who are wrongly imprisoned; lighten the burden of those who work for you. Let the oppressed go free, and remove the chains that bind people. Share your food with the hungry, and give shelter to the homeless. Give clothes to those who need them, and do not hide from relatives who need your help. “Then your salvation will come like the dawn, and your wounds will quickly heal. Your godliness will lead you forward, and the glory of the LORD will protect you from behind. Then when you call, the LORD will answer. ‘Yes, I am here,’ he will quickly reply. “Remove the heavy yoke of oppression. Stop pointing your finger and spreading vicious rumors! Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.
“Keep the Sabbath day holy. Don’t pursue your own interests on that day, but enjoy the Sabbath and speak of it with delight as the LORD’s holy day. Honor the Sabbath in everything you do on that day, and don’t follow your own desires or talk idly. Then the LORD will be your delight. I will give you great honor and satisfy you with the inheritance I promised to your ancestor Jacob. I, the LORD, have spoken!”