Bible Study Notes on Exodus 34 – 20190407

WritingIIIExodus 34:1  “…Cut two tablets of stone like the first ones, and I will write on these tablets…”
God had Moses provide the replacement stones.  He provided the first ones.  He’ll write the covenant, Ten Commandments, on them, but He’s not providing the stones.  Commentaries remind that the first were called the work of God.  These were not.  Sin had caused a need for replacement which wasn’t exactly like the first.  Always a cost.  God forgives the sin, but He doesn’t always remove the consequences.

3  “…let no man be seen throughout all the mountain; let neither flocks nor herds feed…”
Once again, neither man nor beast is allowed to come to the mountain.  It is holy before God and must be respected as such.

5  “…the LORD descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the LORD”
Was wondering what this was for.  Commentary suggests it’s part of God’s promise to Moses to show him His glory.  The LORD has come down and gives a recalling of exactly Who He is.

7  “…visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation”
This always sounded like God was making the children responsible for the sins of the fathers.  But God says elsewhere He doesn’t work that way.  Also, in chapter 20, He said the same thing, but added of those who hate Me.  The idea is that He is a holy and just God.  He can’t let sin go unpunished.  So He will visit iniquity down through generations as long as the people do not repent.  But if they do repent, He will be merciful and forgive.

10  “…it is an awesome thing that I will do with you”
The plan was for God to go before the people and drive out the inhabitants of Canaan for them.  They weren’t going to have to do anything as long as they followed God and obeyed Him.  And He wanted them to be sure and not forge any alliances with the heathen people there due to their influence.  But they neither obeyed nor listened to His instructions.

18  “The Feast of Unleavened Bread you shall keep…”
The Passover Feast.

24  “…I will cast out the nations before you and enlarge your borders…”
God wouldn’t do it all at one time.  He’d given Abraham an extremely large portion of land, some 1,500 square miles.  And He said He’d give them a bit of it at a time so it wouldn’t overwhelm them.  All they had to do was obey, and He would eventually have them in control of the whole territory.  But they never reached it.

27  “…Write these words, for according to the tenor of these words I have made a covenant with you and with Israel”
Verses 10 through 26 restate the covenant statements given earlier in the book.  The basic laws of God.  The whole covenant was the people choosing to live life according to the dictates of God.  And He would help them if they tried.  He would also forgive if they confessed and repented when they failed.

28  “…he was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights…”
Obviously some miraculous intervention here.  Humans can’t go that long without food and water normally.  Moses was sustained by God for the duration.

30  “…behold, the skin of his face shone…”
From being in the presence of God, face to face as it were, although Moses couldn’t actually see God’s face.  He would wear a veil at times but I’m not completely sure of the reason.  Some discussion among commentaries whether the text says Moses put on the veil when he spoke to the people or after he had spoken to the people.  Paul references this in his second letter to the Corinthians which leads some to suggest Moses didn’t wear it to hide the shining, but its waning away over time.  I couldn’t find enough information among my current resources to make a determination one way or the other.

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.

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