Friday, September 24, 2010

WEEKLY SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON
An international Sunday school lesson commentary

For Sunday September 26, 2010
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GOD’S STEADFAST LOVE
(GOD is faithful, loving, and just)
(Exodus 34)

The Ten Commandments still stand as GOD’s instructions to man on how HE wishes us to live our lives here on earth. These laws cannot be, and will not be disregarded, contrary to today’s seemingly popular opinion, or demonstration of that opinion, which is reflected through our behavior, even here in the good ole U.S. of A.
In fact, we experience the effects of our blatant disobedience to these laws, all over the world, every single minute of every single day, through the death, destruction, and decay that is allowed as a consequence of our sins against “THE GOD” that too many people don’t even believe exists. The nations that recognize GOD the least are clearly the nations that most often suffer severe, sudden, or ongoing catastrophes and crises, be they social, economic, or natural in their manifestations.
The good news is that, despite all of our blatant disobedience to GOD’s instructions, HE continues to demonstrate HIS unconditional love and faithfulness to a people that is sorely lacking in both of those qualities. HE gives us chance after chance to repent, and sorrowfully confess our wrongdoing, and start all over again fresh and renewed. And although many may take the opportunity to confess and start over, few if any remain faithful to their promise to GOD.
In Exodus 34, a new copy of the “Ten Commandments” is given to Moses, by GOD, to replace the original one that Moses had broken in anger (Exodus 32:19), after he found the people celebrating and worshipping the golden calf that his brother, Aaron, had made. GOD instructed Moses to make two more stone tablets just like the first ones, and then, return to the top of Mount Sinai alone. Moses did as he was instructed and the LORD appeared to him in the form of a cloud and called HIS OWN name out to Moses. Moses immediately fell to the ground and worshipped, and then, began to plead in intercession for his people, Israel, and as a result, the LORD accepted his petition.
In addition to re-issuing the Decalogue to Moses, GOD also renewed HIS “Mosaic Covenant” with HIS “chosen people”. The stone tablets containing the Ten Commandments represented a tangible token of GOD’s unique relationship with Israel. However, GOD also instructed Moses to write down numerous other instructions by which the people, who wished to call themselves “GOD’s people”, were to live by (vs. 10-27). GOD also wanted the people to know that HIS instructions represented a recipe on how we can remain close to HIM, and that, that recipe for living, was still binding as far as HE is concerned.
Moses met with GOD face to face, and no man has done that, before or since. Scripture tells us that GOD spoke with him as a man would speak with a friend, and, when GOD met with Moses on this occasion, HE sought to emphasize and stress HIS unfailing love and forgiveness for HIS most prized creation, which is, mankind. And, even though man had, and does, continue to disobey GOD’s will, GOD continues to extend mercy, compassion, and forgiveness to us.
However, GOD will not, and cannot allow sin to go unpunished, and there will always be consequences for the iniquities of man, that GOD will exact upon him, so that he will always appreciate the benefits and blessings that come as a result of making right choices instead.
What the LORD said to the Israelites way back then (Deuteronomy 11:26-28), HE is still saying to us today; “Behold! Today I AM giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse! You will be blessed if you obey the commands of the LORD your GOD that I AM giving you today. You will receive a curse if you reject the commands of the LORD your GOD and turn from HIS way by worshipping other gods” (NLT).

A Sunday school lesson by,
Larry D. Alexander


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