Third Sunday in Lent – March 4, 2018

Texts for the Day

The Mosaic Covenant

This is week three of the five-week series on covenants. This week we cover the covenant with Moses. This is a more complex covenant, in some ways encompassing most of the first five books of the Bible.  Spend some time this week reading Exodus 19-31.  This is a fairly big chunk of the book of Exodus.  It begins with the arrival at Sinai and continues with the Ten Commandments.  Moses ascends the mountain and receives the law.  The story ends as Moses comes back, right before the story of the golden calf.

Can you spot the five elements of a covenant?  There are few ways to do this, but here is what I came up with.

  • Suzerain: God
  • Vassal: Moses and all the Israelites
  • Provisions: Israel with be a holy nation (Exodus 19:1-6)
  • Stipulations: The law
  • Sign: The Sabbath (Exodus 31:12-17)

Questions for reflection:

  • What is the relationship of Christians to the Mosaic covenant? Are we God’s chosen people?  If so, in what way?  Are we obligated to keep the law?
  • If we are not obligated to keep all of these laws, why are they in our Bible?  What can these laws teach us about our relationships to God and each other?

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