The Book of Exodus Bible Study Chapter 34 Part 1

Exodus 34:1-17

v1: Which you broke – this is not a criticism. It reminds us of the fact that Israel began to play the harlot (idolatry is spiritual adultery)– to move away from the G-d of Israel.

· The law is for those who are spiritual. The one who walks in the Spirit is going to fulfil the righteousness of the law, and the outcome of that is the glory of G-d being manifested. (Roms 8:1-4)

v2: Be ready – be prepared, be in a right (spiritual) condition

· The giving of the commandments took place upon a mountaintop. When you’re on a mountaintop you see things differently. There was also a change in location. The law is connected to a change in location.

· Present yourself to Me: This speaks of great intimacy between G-d and Moses.

v3: Because of Moses’ commitment to the things of G-d he’s the one that’s being summoned to

this mountaintop experience – no one else. This verse emphasises G-d’s unique call upon the life of Moses, and it’s that call that gave Moses authority.

v4: Rose early: Getting up early shows priority.

· As the L-rd had commanded him: This is how we should behave. When we do what G-d has commanded He brings about a change in our lives.

v5: It was only after Moses had prepared himself and responded to the L-rd (obeyed) that G-d responded to him.

· Descended in the cloud – many scholars say there is a correlation between this cloud and the Holy Spirit.

· Proclaimed – called out.

· Name is synonymous with character. The purpose of the Holy Spirit is to manifest the character of G-d in our lives.

v6: These next few verse make up in Judaism what is known as the 13 attributes of G-d. 13 is considered a good number – the twelve tribes + G-d = 13 (13 shows unity between G-d and man)

v7: Keeping mercy – He guards mercy/grace for thousands.

· By no means clearing the guilty – G-d is gracious but there are some that He cleans and there are some that He will not clean.

· For those who do not seek G-d’s grace He will punish to the next generations – there is a passing on, genetically, of a sinful tendency. This is why we need to be so concerned about guarding ourselves, so we don’t have an unrighteous influence upon the generations that follow after us.

v8: The word used here for “bowed” could also mean Moses prostrated himself before the L-rd. When we see the character of G-d it leads us to worship. He is worthy to be worshipped.

v9: Remember that all that is happening here is set within the context of the giving of the commandments. When we rightly receive the truth of the commandments it is an invitation for G-d to go before us and to be in our midst (after redemption comes regeneration – change. Only G-d, coming into our midst, can bring about this change).

· Take us as Your inheritance – We want to be G-d’s possession.

v10: “Behold” – this word should always remind us to pay attention to what is to come. It’s important.

· Your people – ie Israel

· Marvels – wonders. The commandments, when adhered to, bring about the wondrous activity of G-d, the intimacy of G-d in our lives (as often said: we keep the law not as a means of salvation, but as a testimony to our salvation)

· As have not been done – this is something new, something special, something awesome.

v11: Observe – guard. The revelation of the law (G-d’s truth) is something valuable. It brings about the will, wonder, power and Presence of G-d among His people. We need to value G-d’s expectations not our own. When we do that He goes to work against our enemies.

v12: Take heed – watch out! Don’t do this!

· Snare – same word as landmine. A destructive force (2 Cor 6:14).

v13-14: When we play the harlot, giving attention to things that we ought not to, G-d’s jealousy manifests itself in an unpleasant way in our lives.

v15: Don’t get excited about Israel making a treaty, an agreement, with another nation. G-d did not desire them to do that.

· When we recognize (eat, partake at the altar of) an idol, a false G-d, it brings demonic activity into our lives.

v16: The outcome of this is that the corruption carries through to the next generation.

Note: When we enter into an unrighteous and improper agreement with a non-believer it has spiritual connections and will produce demonic activity in our lives. We need to guard the agreements we make, and with whom we make them.

v17: When we allow the influence of non-believers, pagans, into our lives it is always going to have a negative outcome.

· Moulded gods – those which we construct/make.

NB: The commandments of G-d safeguard us against idolatry.

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