Exodus 19:1 “In the third month…”
The exodus from Egypt set the new calendar in motion. The third month after they left.
1 “…on the same day…”
Not sure of this one. Are we talking the first day of the month or another day? Commentaries suggest the first day of the month, the first day of this time period.
1 “…they came to the Wilderness of Sinai”
Been gone from Egypt for two months. Now they reach the wilderness of Sinai to camp in front of the mountain. Will be here a while.
6 “…you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation…”
As long as they obeyed God, He would have them as His special people who would share Him with the world. This wasn’t a new covenant. It wasn’t a conditional contract. It was the continuation of the one He made to Abraham. If the people didn’t obey Him, He wouldn’t throw them away, He would simply pass on to the next generations and only after repeated attempts to get them to repent.
8 “…All that the LORD has spoken we will do…”
So gung ho when standing in the spotlight, but no follow through. Add a little stress and pressure and the complaining will take over.
9 “…I come to you in the thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with you…”
Possibly the same could that led them by day. But the point was to show Himself awesome before the people. And to show that He had chosen Moses to be His spokesperson.
12 “…Whoever touches the mountain shall surely be put to death”
The seriousness of meeting with God. While we don’t have to worry about that anymore because of what Christ has done for us, we still need to have the attitude of reverence and respect when we meet with Him. I think we should also have this idea when we worship. Don’t give God the leftovers. Give Him your best. Just because He’ll show mercy and take less doesn’t mean we should give less.
15 “…do not come near your wives”
Obvious what is referenced, but unsure as to the why. Commentaries suggest it’s the overall idea of sexual relations being seen as unclean, even lawful ones. It makes me wonder if God actually considered it that way, or if He knew the people did so He went with it. He didn’t mention it here, but it is included in some areas of Levitical law. Although, that is usually in reference to sex during a woman’s monthly period. I’m wondering if the idea is more the point. Separate yourselves, wash your clothes, abstain from all natural desires and focus on God alone before you meet with Him.
16 “Then it came to pass on the third day…”
In verse 10, God says to consecrate today and tomorrow, and then on the third day He will show up. A good reference to how they viewed time. Not three 24 hour periods, but this day, tomorrow, and the next day. This idea of time comes in handy when looking at the time Jesus is in the tomb. In on Friday, out on Sunday.
19 “…God answered him by voice”
Assuming an audible voice which the people could hear as well. Commentaries agree. That was the point of it.
24 “…Away! Get down and then come up…”
Verses 21-25, are a bit confusing at first. They sound like a repeat of the commands God gave Moses earlier. Especially when you look at Moses’s reply. However, if you assume the people were trying to get too close to the mountain, then the conversation goes like this. God tells Moses get back down and tell the people not to approach. Moses replies they won’t approach because they already know not to. God says emphatically, get down there and warn them again, then come back up. They are close to getting into trouble. At this point, Moses realizes what is happening and he goes down to warn them again. Sometimes it’s hard to see the context due to frequent overlaps, but that’s why you always interpret scripture in three steps. How does it relate to surrounding verses, how does it relate to the rest of the book, and how does it relate to the entire Bible. If there are conflicts at any step, the interpretation must be reexamined.
I hope you enjoy reading and studying His word. May it accomplish what He desires. Please feel free to comment or post questions. Thanks for reading!
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.