“These are the commandments the LORD proclaimed in a loud voice to your whole assembly there on the mountain from out of the fire, the cloud and the deep darkness; and he added nothing more. Then he wrote them on two stone tablets and gave them to me.” Deuteronomy 5:22
I read this in preparation for a teaching I’ll be doing tomorrow on the book of Deuteronomy. I can hardly believe that I never noticed this. How many times have I read the same passage and just skipped over this fact?
The LORD spoke the ten commandments to Israel with an audible voice! They all heard Him with their actual ears, and it was corporate. The same Israelites who were rescued from slavery by miracles experienced something even greater here. God revealed Himself to them in public. There was no chance for confusion or doubting His words or even His very existence! The Creator of the universe was intensely personal and real to them. They would never be able to forget this.
It’s also very interesting that of all the things He could say under such circumstances He spoke the moral law. Those descriptions of reality. Those design requirements that apply to every human in every situation in every time.
It’s sad that after this great event the people told Moses to go speak to Him from now on. They assumed they would die and thus began the distancing between God and His people that so often we are guilty of today. It’s uncomfortable to be confronted with the closeness and reality of God, but it’s what He always wanted. He’s worth it. Let’s be like Moses and Joshua who decided to take advantage of His closeness and spend as much time as we can with Him.