Summary: Everyday, the Lord is inviting us to draw closer and have fellowship with Him. But many times, we are too busy that we tend to ignore His invitation for us. In this message, we will learn three important responses from the life of Moses.
THE LORD'S INVITATION TO COME UP
We will continue our study on the Book of Exodus.
We are now in chapter 24 when the elders of Israel saw God and had a time of great fellowship with Him.
It all started with the invitation of the Lord to Moses telling them to come up together with the seventy elders of Israel.
They were to worship at a distance but only Moses is asked to approach the Lord personally.
Then, when Moses told the people all that the Lord's words to them and the laws that they need to obey.
They all responded and agreed together with one voice: "Everything that the Lord has said we will do."
Moses then wrote down everything that the Lord has said.
The next morning, Moses, got up and built an altar at the foot of the mountain and set up twelve stone pillars representing the twelve tribes of Israel.
Then, he sent young Israelite men who offered burnt offerings and sacrificed young bulls as fellowship offerings to the Lord.
Moses then took half of the blood and put it in the bowls and the other half he splashed against the altar.
Then, he took the Book of the Covenant and read it to the people.
Again, the people responded with one voice, "We will do everything the Lord has said, we will obey."
Moses then took the blood, sprinkled it on the people and said, "This is the blood of the covenant that the Lord has made with you in accordance with all these words."
It was a sign that their sins have been atoned for and they are now ready to come near God.
After that, Moses, Aaron, Nadab and Abihu and the seventy elders of Israel went up and saw the God of Israel.
Under his feet was something like a pavement made of lapis lazuli, as bright as the sky.
During that time of fellowship, they were privileged to see God and together, they ate and drank.
Then, the Lord said to Moses, "Come up to me on the mountain and stay here.
I will give you the tablets of stone with the law and commandments I have written for their instruction."
Then Moses set out with Joshua, his aide, and they went up on the mountain of God.
He said to the elders, "Wait here for us until we come back to you.
Aaron and Hur are with you, and anyone involved in a dispute can go to them."
Then, it was said that when Moses went up on the Mountain, the cloud covered it.
The glory of the Lord settled on Mount Sinai.
For six days, the cloud covered the mountain, and on the seventh day, the Lord called to Moses from within the cloud.
To the Israelites, the glory of the Lord looked like a consuming fire on top of the mountain.
Then, Moses entered the cloud as he went up on the mountain.,
And he stayed on the mountain for forty days and forty nights.
That means he fasted and prayed during that time.
No wonder, the glory of the Lord was upon him.
This is a remarkable incident upon the lives of Moses and the elders of Israel when they had been given a special privilege or opportunity to see the Lord and lived.
Actually, it is impossible to see God face to face.
Only God is immortal while humans are mortal and subject to death because of sin.
The Bible says that "No one may see me (God) and live." Exodus 33:20 (NIV)
But in here, we read Moses and his team being invited by God, responding to the invitation and having fellowship, eating and drinking with the God of the universe Himself.
They did not die but they lived to tell the story.
It is a remarkable and extraordinary phase of the history of Israel as a new nation under God.
But today, we will examine the story in Exodus that led to this amazing time of fellowship with God.
We will look closely at that invitation and examine our response to it.
How did it happen that Moses and the elders were given such a great authority or entitlement to see God?
It all started with the first verse of chapter 24 when the Lord said to Moses, "Come up to the Lord."
It was a special invitation to come up.
God was inviting them to have fellowship with Him.
How many of you would like to receive an invitation such as this to attend a special party?
Many of you would probably get so excited when you receive a beautiful invitation card to attend a party such as wedding, a graduation or a birthday party set for instance in a beautiful landscape overlooking a mountain and the spacious blue sky above.