The Israelites were in the wilderness, free at last, eating manna they collected each morning and quails in the evening. They had water to drink too.
So God provided their nourishment and they could see his presence in the pillars of cloud by day and fire at night. God then provided them with 2 other very important things. Rules to live by and a way to worship him.
We have to remember that these people were kept in slavery in someone else’s country and were treated cruelly all their lives. Now they are wanderers in an unfamiliar land, uncertain of their future, learning to trust in God and the leadership of Moses. I wonder if they knew how to behave and treat each other properly? But they were God’s people, the chosen ones to be a ‘light to the nations’ as we saw in the story of Abraham. They had to clean up their act and shine!
On Mount Sinai God gave Moses the 10 commandments which gave them rules to live by.
Now:I wonder if you think these rules are easy to keep?
I wonder if you think some are easier to keep than others?
I wonder if you already know there are some you don’t keep?
The second thing that God gave them was a way to worship him. And it was quite elaborate. He gave instructions on building a tabernacle, a portable tent structure where the people could go and offer him worship and sacrifices. It was very ornate and beautiful.
God also told them how the priests should dress and what services should be held, when and how often and where in this structure. All of it could be folded up and transported when they moved on.
The account of the tabernacle and everything about it is found in the Bible and covers many chapters. It is lengthy but fascinating as well. There is lot of interesting information on the internet.
Now: I wonder where the people got all the stuff from to build it?
I wonder if the set ways to worship helped them come close to God?
I wonder if the rules and the worship helped them be this LIGHT they were supposed to be for the nations.
We will leave the beginning of the Bible for now, and next week will look at some stories around Holy Week which leads up to Easter Day.