Exodus 34

Vs. 6, “And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.”  The LORD instructs Moses to come back up the mountain.  By His grace, we see the covenant renewed (vs. 10).  Even though the LORD is compassionate and loving, He is also gives out consequences (vs. 7).  Like the punishment of the second commandment (Exodus 20:5), the generation up to the fourth are affected because of sin.  After Moses pleads with God to ensure His renewal of His promise, the LORD goes on to repeat for Moses’ sake some of the highlights of what we’ve been reading over the past couple of weeks (vs. 10-28).  Moses stays up on Mount Sinai for 40 days and 40 nights and fasts (vs. 28).  Then a peculiar things transpires, as Moses descends the mountain, his face his glowing the glory of God (vs. 29-35)

Regarding application…God’s Forgiveness.  God gave the Israelites a second chance here at Mount Sinai.  I would suspect that we would be simply shocked by the countless  times God has given us “second” chances.  There will be times when we mess up.  There will be times when we doubt.  There will be times when we are ignorant.  God knows something we don’t…He knows everyone’s heart and mind.  To the Israelites credit, after they sinned, the vast majority did in fact repent.  Our interceder is not Moses today, but Jesus.  Question: Are there a golden calf in your life today?  Anything that you are idolizing?  Take time to ask the Spirit of God to convict your heart and turn to Him in repentance.  God is forgiving and faithful (I John 1:9).

Exodus 33

Vs. 5,  For the Lord had said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites, ‘You are a stiff-necked people. If I were to go with you even for a moment, I might destroy you. Now take off your ornaments and I will decide what to do with you.”  While the LORD would spare the people, His presence to be with them was not guaranteed.  This is quite a revelation and it shocked the people into mourning (vs. 4-6).  Basically, they were totally taking God for granted.  Meanwhile, Moses sets up a temporary tent of meeting with the LORD (for the tabernacle had not yet been built) (vs. 7-11).  Once again, we see Moses’ personal relationship with the Lord and his plea to intercede on behalf of the sinful Israelites (vs. 12-17).  When Moses boldly asks God to show him His glory (vs. 18), part of the reasoning might have been because He wanted to solidify the new promise that God had just given him.  God lovingly obliged, but Moses could not see God and live, so he only was able to see the goodness of God from His back (vs. 19-23).

Regarding application…Pleasing God.  Vs. 17, “And the Lord said to Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”  Because God was pleased with Moses, He now promises His presence will go with the Israelites.  Isn’t that amazing?  When we live a life that pleases God, others are blessed because of it!  When we fly in an airplane, the flight attendant always reminds us to put on our oxygen mask first before we can help another nearby.  If we are going to make an impact on this world, the first thing we should do is ensure a healthy and vibrant relationship with the Lord!  Notice how Moses nurtured his relationship with the Lord by meeting with Him (vs. 7-11).  We do the very same thing when we setup our own meeting place with the Lord.  Let us live a life that is pleasing to God!

Hosea 13

Vs. 3, “Therefore they will be like the morning mist, like the early dew that disappears,  like chaff  swirling from a threshing floor, like smoke escaping through a window.”  Hosea is looking back at how Israel used to be (vs. 1).  But they not only turned from God, they were sacrificing to pagan God’s like Baal (vs. 2).   If they had only turned back to God, but they were putting their trust in the things of this world.  But what stands out more than anything is the fact that it is God who directs the outcome of our life.  We would do far better if we feared God more.  Yet, once again, we see the grace of our God as He will one day ransom us from death itself (vs. 14).

Regarding application…Remember God’s Goodness.  Vs. 4 “But I am the Lord your God,  who brought you out of Egypt. You shall acknowledge no God but me, no Savior except me.”  Question: How do we remember God’s goodness today?  Jesus would tell us and Paul would remind us that when we meet we are to remember Jesus’ goodness and sacrifice (I Cor. 11) with the Lord’s Supper.  This is just one reminder of why we meet.  Of course, we are a forgetful people.  That is why the Word of God exhorts us to spend time daily.  That is why He gave us the incredible gift called the church!  Think about something God has done for you this past week, month or year.  Acknowledge it and give thanks to the Lord!