Isolated in a remote, barren desert the people of Israel make camp before a stark, craggy mountain. The scene is a depressing contrast with the lush pastureland they had left in Egypt. But it was here they were told that their God was going to meet them. And meet them he did. With supernatural shock and awe God made it clear the Israelite people had better take seriously what so often is called that “religion thing”.
Critics of the Bible explain the fire, thunder and lightening as products of a primitive culture which believed in a ranting and raging God who took sadistic pleasure by intimidating human beings. Accusing God of being a big bully is nothing new. Ever since Adam and Eve people have always blamed God whenever something happens they don’t like.
To dismiss the God of Mount Sinai where he gave Moses the largest and most precise description of himself and what God wants from human beings would be ingenuous. Let’s face it, power demonstrations work. They get our attention. The IRS sending you letters to pay back taxes is one thing. It’s a whole different story when agents show up at your door asking you to accompany them. Power is real. Power needs to be respected.
If God is worth being called God, power is a part of his personality. To deny that would be to deny God (and a lot of people choose that route). But there is so much more in the mountaintop meeting God had with Moses. When Moses reported what he had seen and heard to the people, those individuals had a greater understanding of who God is than any other people up to that time. The demonstration of power was God’s way of getting peoples’ attention so that he then could share with them what they needed to know about him. The account of the giving of the 10 Commandments is not about the raging God, but the revealing God.
A prominent skeptic once said, “If I believed that God existed, the only thing worth living for would be to find out about that God.” Well, God does exist. And more than that, he has made finding out about him readily accessible. That access is called the Bible.
Whether you feel you are raging at God, or he is raging at you, join us for one of our weekend worship services. God’s specialty is not rage, it’s revealing himself to people so that they might know him, receive his love for them and love him in return. Bottom line is that what the revealing God wants is for you to come back to the family.
Weekend worship service times: Saturday: 6:00 pm – Sunday: 10:00 am