The mountain in the Sinai peninsula (probably present-day Jebel Musa), also called Horeb in the OT, where God made a covenant with Israel, establishing them as his people and giving them his laws. In the NT Sinai is seen as symbolising the old covenant.
Mount Sinai and the call of Moses
Ex 3:1-10Most scholars agree that the names Horeb and Sinai are used interchangeably of the same mountain, although some see them as referring to separate peaks within the same range. See alsoAc 7:30-34
God reveals himself to Israel at Mount Sinai
The people of Israel arrive at Mount Sinai three months after leaving EgyptEx 19:1-2
God gives Israel the Book of the CovenantEx 20:22-23:19 These laws, largely an expansion and exposition of the Ten Commandments, are called “the Book of the Covenant” in Ex 24:7.
God establishes the covenant with Israel on Mount Sinai
Moses performs the ceremony establishing the covenantEx 24:4-8
Moses and other leaders ascend Mount Sinai to seal the covenant with a meal before GodEx 24:9-11
Moses ascends Mount Sinai further to receive the stone tablets and the requirements of covenant worshipEx 24:12-18During Moses’40 days on Mount Sinai, God revealed to him the requirements of covenant worship, as outlined in Ex 25:1-31:18. See alsoLev 7:37-38; Lev 26:46
Moses descends Mount Sinai and discovers Israel’s idolatry
Mount Sinai seen by NT writers as a symbol of the old covenant
Gal 4:24-31 Hagar, Mount Sinai and the present city of Jerusalem stand for the old covenant and bondage to the law, while Sarah and the new heavenly Jerusalem stand for the new covenant and living by faith; Heb 12:18-29
Dictionary of Bible Themes Scripture index copyright Martin H. Manser, 2009. As Editor, Martin Manser wishes to thank all those who compiled or edited the NIV Thematic Study Bible, on which this work is based.