Posted: Wednesday, February 4
Verse of the day:
So Moses went down to the people and told them what the Lord had said. Then God gave the people all these instructions… (Exodus 19:25)
Moses comes down from Mt. Sinai and begins reading God’s instructions. He begins with this: “I am the Lord your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt.” I find this opening statement surprising. Why not just begin with ‘Rule #1’? God certainly has the authority. It would seem well within the rights of a creator to demand obedience from the ones he created. So why not open with ‘I am the Lord your God who created the heavens and the earth’?
Here’s my best guess: God wants us to understand his role as rule maker. We’ve all submitted to rules from parents, employers, governments and even board games. God wants to make his position clear. “I am the Lord your God, who rescued you from the land of Egypt.” I am the Lord your God who cares about your present and future well being. This isn’t only a position of power; it is a position of concern.
In the last two months, the phrase “don’t run on the ice” has exited my mouth with unprecedented frequency. I make rules for my children every day. My hope is that they learn to understand my role as rule maker. Yes, I have a position of power, but I also have a position of concern. I want them to succeed in their strivings. I want them to develop healthy and holy relationships. If I could write my own paraphrase for Exodus 20:2, it would read like this…
“I’m your dad. I will take care of you. Here’s my rules.”