Review – This week started with a review of some of the important things leading up to Mt Sinai. I reminded Hoax that Abraham was not chosen because of his own merit, nor was Israel. Rather, God chose Israel as a vehicle to display his own glory. We read a few passages from Deuteronomy to emphasize these points.
The Law – Though this took a while, it’s pretty easy to summarize. We went through the ten commandments applying them to ourselves to see how we stack up. Considering the results, I explained that both of us fall short of God’s standard and deserve punishment. I also drilled home the points that 1. this law was given to Israel, not us and 2. the ten commandments are only part of the law. This is always true of course, but particularly important for Hoax who has asked no less than five separate times what I think about the Seventh Day Adventists here who tell him he will go to hell if he goes to church on Sunday instead of Saturday.
Tabernacle – I showed Hoax a diagram of the Tabernacle and explained the different parts and purposes. We talked about the importance of perfection when being in God’s presence (as the high priest would be) and related this to Adam and Eve and their consequence for corrupting their own perfection.
Sacrifices – I read a few passages from Leviticus describing different sacrifices as well as the annual sacrifice for the atonement of all Israel. I highlighted the following points:
- There was death as a result of sin.
- The sacrifices were a substitute.
- The sacrifices were repeated showing that not one of them was final.
- The animals sacrificed had to be unblemished.
- Israel’s faith expressed in their obedience made them clean in God’s eyes.
I related what we talked about here back to Abraham showing Hoax that in both cases it is God who is the one making people righteous or clean. Abraham and Israel had to come to God in faith and rely on him to do the fixing.
Hoax’s Response – As we talked about these lessons, Hoax was clear that he understood his own position with God. He knows that he has not lived a perfect life and has saved up guilt and punishment for himself. One of the last things he said this week was something like “Now I see that straightening a man is not the work of a man, but the work of God.”