Today we begin Exodus Chapter 34.
For the Complete Jewish Bible, click here.
For the King James version, click here.
“Adonai said to Moshe, “Cut yourself two tablets of stone like the first ones; and I will inscribe on the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke. Be ready by morning; in the morning you are to ascend Mount Sinai and present yourself to me on the top of the mountain.“
Exodus chapter 32 was about the breaking of the covenant relationship between God and man.
Chapter 33 showed us the terrible results of the covenant being broken.
And in chapter 34, where we’re at now, we’re going to see the Lord restore and renew His People.
In order to accomplish this, the Lord commands Moses to cut two fresh stone tablets and bring them to the top of Mount Sinai.
Now this is the perfect time to address one of my major pet peeves: the REAL location of Mount Sinai.
Let me start off by saying that it is absolutely NOT the traditional location on the Sinai Peninsula where St. Katherine’s Monastery has been built and where thousands of Christian pilgrims visit every year.
Let’s not forget that Mountain Sinai also goes by another name.
It is also called Mount Horeb.
Mount Horeb and Mount Sinai are one and the same.
Well, how exactly did the traditional and WRONG location of Mount Sinai come to be called the Mountain of God?
It all started when Constantine, the Emperor of Rome in the 4th century, became a Christian (apparently he had some psychedelic vision of a cross one night), and then soon afterwards declared Christianity to be a government authorized and therefore legal religion inside the Roman Empire.
Constantine’s mother, Helena, also converted to Christianity and like her son was also prone to wild visions.
Practically every biblical site in Israel today that has a monastery or Catholic Church built upon it was the result of her fanciful visions.
And without exception, every one of these sites have nothing to do with historical reality, nor do they agree with the early church fathers AND the Jewish rabbis.
These sites, now cemented into gentile Christian tradition, were the result of Helena’s dreams and visions, period.
And Mount Sinai was one such site.
What’s even more interesting, if not laughable, is that if the Mount Sinai location chosen by Constantine’s mother was really true, the Jewish people would have already been revering that location many centuries before Helena came on the scene.
But it turns out no such thing.
The Jewish people knew nothing of Mount Sinai being located on Sinai Peninsula per Helena’s vision.
On the other hand, I can name three prominent figures who affirm the true location of Sinai being on the Arabian Peninsula.
Josephus said that Mount Sinai is in Arabia.
Philo also said that Mount Sinai is in Arabia.
And how about the Apostle Paul for a credible authority?
In the Book of Galatians, the Apostle Paul clearly states that Mount Sinai is in Arabia.
Oh, and let’s also not forget the Burning Bush incident.
Recall that Moses encountered the Burning Bush on a mountain in Midian.
And the Bible makes it explicitly clear that the same mountain where Moses first encountered God at the Burning Bush was the exact same mountain where he brought Israel after they left Egypt.
In other words, he took them to Midian located on the Arabian Peninsula.
Some hardcore traditionalist Christian scholars will try to fight this claim by asserting that Sinai was considered part of Arabia at that time.
Get outta my face with that nonsense!
There is not one shred of documentary evidence supporting that ridiculous assertion.
This is just gentile speculation gone wild.
But, on the other hand, I’ll tell you what is well documented.
The fact that Egypt controlled Sinai at the time of Moses and the fact that Midian was on the Arabia Peninsula is super well documented.
Another clever trick that some scholars will use in their attempts to explain away Paul and Josephus is to say the mention of Arabia was metaphorical or allegorical.
This actually goes right to the heart of the problem with Christianity.
Too much allegorizing and making metaphors out of the plain intent and words of Scripture is why the Church has wandered so far from its Hebrew roots over the past couple of centuries.
I mean, don’t you find it ridiculous that there are literally thousands of Christian denominations all basing themselves on the same document?
There is a good reason why the Western gentile church took to making the Scriptures allegorical and metaphorical.
They did so because it was the only way to rid the original Messianic Christian faith of anything Jewish.
And the most ridiculous way the gentile church has allegorized the Scriptures is their affirmation that Israel became allegorical for the church.
The truth is that not only have we found the area in Arabia that matches the Biblical description and what Paul and Josephus said, but we also have archeological evidence proving the Israelites resided there.
For the church to say that Western Arabia became allegorical for Mount Sinai is chutzpah beyond the pale.
I just find it amazing how certain traditions got their start and find it even more amazing that millions of people would choose to accepts myths over truth.
CONNECTING THIS TEACHING TO THE NEW TESTAMENT
Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia;
she corresponds to the present Yerushalayim,
for she serves as a slave along with her children.