"In today’s passage, Moses discovered that while he was on Mount Sinai with God, the people had pressured Aaron into constructing a gold calf image. They then worshipped their new idol which infuriated Moses. Moses pleaded with God not to destroy the people. Moses and God had developed a very personal relationship, an example of the kind of relationship God wants with us today." (New Zealand's Rhema Radio)
The LORD replied to Moses, "Whoever has sinned against me I will blot out of my book. Now go, lead the people to the place I spoke of, and my angel will go before you. However, when the time comes for me to punish, I will punish them for their sin." (Exodus 32:33)The holiness of God requires that sin be both punished and forgiven. At this point in history God provides the rules for which his people can know what is sin and provides a way to satisfy God's wrath through animal sacrifices and the tabernacle while still maintaining contact with his people (Exodus 20-31). Because God is Holy, he is just and justice requires punishment.
Then the LORD came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the LORD. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, "The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation." (Exodus 34:5-7)
Punishment and Forgiveness seem to be opposites. God's love is the only thing that can bring them together and create beauty. John Piper has wonderfully summarized God’s eternal solution in this way: "The wisdom of God has devised a way for the love of God to satisfy the wrath of God without compromising the justice of God."
At the Cross of Christ we see the Wrath of God.
At the Cross we see the Justice of God.
At the Cross we see the Love of God.
I am working through the E100 Bible Reading Challenge again. You can learn more about my journey and read the other posts completed so far at this link. I encourage you to stop back soon to read another passage.
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