Who is this God who calls us into relationship with him? Who reached into the misery of sin-stricken humanity and delivered us?
He didn’t rescue us so that we might flounder in the desert. He didn’t rescue us and then tsk us for the crazy dilemma we’d gotten ourselves into at that tree in the garden. Can you just imagine if he brought Israel into the desert then started in on a diatribe, “I thought you knew better. How many times do I have to tell you that I love you? Don’t you remember the words I spoke to Abraham? Well, you should.”
No, he rescued us to be his people, a royal priesthood. And now, as we read Exodus 20 and think of that holy mountain, the thunder and quaking, we don’t view those laws through the glasses of orphans or unredeemed people. We behold the precious life-giving commands as the church Peter describes:
God spoke because he loved us. He spoke so that we would know how to act as his people. Our following of these commands is an act of praise, a living sacrifice.
So what if we viewed the ten commandments as a creed for how to praise God, how to witness to his wonderful light? And what if we viewed the breaking of these commands as a return to darkness? Why would we run back to slavery when we can live in the freedom Christ offers?
For Christ is God’s wonderful light.