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Dictionary of Bible Themes – 4269 Sinai, Mount
4269 Sinai, Mount

4269 Sinai, Mount

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 3:1-10 Most 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 also Ac 7:30-34

God reveals himself to Israel at Mount Sinai

The people of Israel arrive at Mount Sinai three months after leaving Egypt Ex 19:1-2

God promises to make Israel his people Ex 19:3-6

God calls for holiness among his people See also Ex 19:10-15,20-24

God appears in a theophany Ex 19:16-19 See also Dt 4:10-12; Heb 12:18-21

God gives his laws to Israel on Mount Sinai

God gives Israel the Ten Commandments Ex 20:1-17 pp Dt 5:6-21

Israel responds with fear to God’s revelation See also Ex 20:18-21; Dt 5:23-27; Dt 18:16

God gives Israel the Book of the Covenant Ex 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 covenant Ex 24:4-8

Moses and other leaders ascend Mount Sinai to seal the covenant with a meal before God Ex 24:9-11

Moses ascends Mount Sinai further to receive the stone tablets and the requirements of covenant worship Ex 24:12-18 During Moses’40 days on Mount Sinai, God revealed to him the requirements of covenant worship, as outlined in Ex 25:1-31:18. See also Lev 7:37-38; Lev 26:46

Moses descends Mount Sinai and discovers Israel’s idolatry

Ex 32:19 See also Ex 32:1-6,21-35; Dt 9:8-21; Ps 106:19-23

God commands Israel to move on from Mount Sinai

Ex 33:1-6,15-16

God calls Moses up Mount Sinai again

Moses is commanded to prepare new stone tablets Ex 34:1-4

God reveals his nature and name to Moses Ex 34:5-7

God renews his covenant with Israel See also Ex 34:10-28

Moses descends Mount Sinai, his face radiant Ex 34:29-35

The people of Israel prepare to move on from Mount Sinai

God commands Moses to take a census of Israel in the Desert of Sinai Nu 1:1-4; Nu 3:14-16

The Israelites celebrate the Passover at Mount Sinai Nu 9:1-5

The Israelites leave Mount Sinai Nu 10:11-13 The Israelites had been at Mount Sinai for almost a year (see also Ex 19:1); Dt 1:6-8

Later generations look back to God’s revelation on Mount Sinai

Jdg 5:5 Ascribing the title “the One of Sinai” to God, Deborah acknowledges the great importance of his revelation at Mount Sinai. See also 1Ki 19:8-9 Elijah’s return to Horeb, the mountain of God, shows his need to hear God clearly again; Ne 9:13-14; Ps 68:7-8; Ps 106:19-23; Mal 4:4; Ac 7:37-38

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

See also

1045God, glory of
1065God, holiness of
1235God, the Lord
1349covenant at Sinai
1443revelation, OT
5377law, Ten Commandments
8270holiness, set apart
8769idolatry, in OT

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