Monday, March 20, 2017

Day 47: Laws of Worship and Resurrection

Exodus 23, 24 and Matthew 28:

These chapters introduce us to some of the laws of worship for the Israelites. These laws were to help differentiate between the worship they had known and seen in Egypt and worship of the one true God. In Matthew, we are given the account of Jesus’ resurrection.

Exodus 23

The laws for worship and living are continued in this chapter of Exodus. Verse 9 reminds the people for a second time to not oppress the alien in their midst. This is one of God’s laws repeated time and time again in scripture.
God gives the Sabbath laws, decreeing that even fields get a rest one out of every seven years. Rest is a necessity it would seem, even for the soil. Why do we struggle so much in actually taking a day of rest and worship ourselves?
God declares the celebration of three festivals, Passover, Harvest and the Ingathering (or end of growing season) I was recently asked why we do not celebrate these festivals in our Christian faith. We choose to celebrate each Sunday as a remembrance of the resurrection and we celebrate the birth, death, and resurrection of the Lord annually. This is a way that Christians began differentiating themselves from those who did not accept Jesus as the Messiah.

Exodus 24

Aaron and Moses along with 70 elders are allowed to go up the mountain. They saw God and lived to tell the story. There is a beautiful description of seeing God’s feet resting on a sapphire or lapis lazuli. Moses goes up to the very top to speak with God and is there 40 days and 40 nights.

Matthew 28

Three days have passed and the women are going to the tomb to anoint Jesus’ body. There is another earthquake and when they arrive they find the stone rolled away and the guards is shock. An Angel stands there and tells them Jesus is risen! He tells them to tell the others to meet Jesus in Galilee. The women leave fearful, yet full of joy.
Along the way they meet Jesus. They cling to him, worship him. Jesus then tells them to tell the disciples to gather in Galilee. They run to the disciples and spread the Gospel message.
Meanwhile the guards find their ability to speak and move. They go to the priests and tell what they saw. The priests bribe them to lie about what they have witnessed. And a rumor spreads that Jesus’ body was stolen from the grave.
When the disciples and Jesus gather in Galilee some believe and others doubt. Jesus gives the great commission to them all. Even those who held doubt. Even when we question or are unsure, we are to continue in the work, trusting that God’s got this.

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