他们大约走了三个月，就停在西奈山前安营。现在是上帝赐给他们律法的时候了。上帝告诉他们，所有人都要洗澡，洗衣服，然后聚集在山的周围——但不要碰那山! 他们都照做了，山就开始摇晃起来! 他们听到隆隆的雷声，看见闪电划过天空，还听到一阵吹角声! 然后，他们看见一片浓密的云从山上下来了。他们都很害怕!
Moses and the Ten Commandments
Moses was the leader God chose for his people, the Israelites. Moses delivered the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, and Moses received the Ten Commandments from God himself. Here’s how it happened:
The Israelites were all the great-great-grandchildren of Abraham,
Isaac, and Jacob. They had gone to live in Egypt so they wouldn’t starve, and then they stayed there—for more than 400 years! They were already a big family—about 70 people— but God blessed them and made them a huge family—about two million people!
They were happy in Egypt until a new ruler came to power and decided to make them his slaves. They worked outside in the hot sun, making bricks and building buildings. Their lives were so hard! They cried out to God to help them, so he sent Moses to deliver them! With Moses as their leader, they escaped from the Egyptians and started walking toward the Promised Land.
After they’d walked for three months, the Israelites camped in front of Mount Sinai. It was time for God to give them his law. God told them all to take a bath and wash their clothes, and then to gather around the mountain—but not to touch it! As they did, the mountain started shaking! They heard roaring thunder. They saw lightning flash across the sky. They heard the blast of trumpets! And they saw a thick dark cloud come down over the mountain. They were so scared!
Then God himself spoke to them from the mountain! He told them the Ten Commandments, including “worship only me” and “obey your parents” and “don’t lie or steal.” A little later, Moses went up on the mountain to talk to God, and God wrote those commandments with his own finger on two tablets of stone.
God gave Moses many other laws for the Israelites too—rules about how to live together without hurting each other, how to worship, and how to stay separated from unbelievers. We often think of laws as bad things, rules that don’t let us do what we want. But God’s gift of the law made the Israelites special! It kept them safe. God did it so they would stay together and would always remember the promise of the Savior he had given them!
Before God gave any of these laws, though—before he told them what to do—he told them what he had done for them! He said, “I am the Lord your God, the God who loves you, the God who keeps his promises, the God who brought you out of slavery in Egypt. If you obey my law, then you are going to be my chosen people, a holy nation!”
Why did God give Israel his laws and make them his chosen people?
God loved them and wanted them to be the family in which Jesus was born.
As I hang the STONE TABLETS on the JESSE TREE, Here is an Advent promise for me:
God made Israel his special chosen people,
the people that would be the family of Jesus.
MARTIN LUTHER COLLEGE 出版