One People of God
Today’s reading: Exodus 17:1-20:21
My selection: Exodus 19:3-6
The Lord called to him out of the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the people of Israel: 4 You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. 5 Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine; 6 and you shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.”
My reflections: God’s purpose for Israel in bringing them out of Egypt and slavery was to bring them to Himself so that they might obey His voice, keep His covenant and be His treasured possession among all peoples. Through this relationship and their response to Him they would be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. Peter uses this same language in referring to the Church (I Peter 2:9). It was always God’s purpose in choosing Abraham to transform Israel, the Old Testament church which is continued in the redemption of people from every tribe and tongue, into the Church of Jesus Christ. There is one Church, one purpose. Here we see the unfolding of God’s purpose and the unity of Scripture that is emphasized in covenant theology, but, I believe, is missed in dispensationalism which erroneously maintains a separate purpose and plan for ethnic Israel and the true spiritual Israel.
My challenge: What God did for the Israelites in forming them into a nation was part of the plan which resulted in the coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, His life, His atoning death, His resurrection and His ascension to the right hand of God the Father. Our hope is in Him who will come again to judge the living and the dead and to gather His one people to Himself for eternity. If this is your hope, give Him thanks today. Pray that His Kingdom will come fully and soon.
Tomorrow’s reading: Exodus 20:22-23:13