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1 And he said unto Moses, Come up unto the LORD, thou, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel; and worship ye afar off.

2 And Moses alone shall come near the LORD: but they shall not come nigh; neither shall the people go up with him.

3 And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.

4 And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel.

5 And he sent young men of the children of Israel, which offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings of oxen unto the LORD.

6 And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basons; and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar.

7 And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the LORD hath said will we do, and be obedient.

8 And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the LORD hath made with you concerning all these words.

9 Then went up Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel:

10 And they saw the God of Israel: and there was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness.

11 And upon the nobles of the children of Israel he laid not his hand: also they saw God, and did eat and drink.

12 And the LORD said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them.

13 And Moses rose up, and his minister Joshua: and Moses went up into the mount of God.

14 And he said unto the elders, Tarry ye here for us, until we come again unto you: and, behold, Aaron and Hur are with you: if any man have any matters to do, let him come unto them.

15 And Moses went up into the mount, and a cloud covered the mount.

16 And the glory of the LORD abode upon mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days: and the seventh day he called unto Moses out of the midst of the cloud.

17 And the sight of the glory of the LORD was like devouring fire on the top of the mount in the eyes of the children of Israel.

18 And Moses went into the midst of the cloud, and gat him up into the mount: and Moses was in the mount forty days and forty nights.

Commentary for Exodus 24

Moses is called up into the mountain, The people promise obedience. (1-8) The glory of the Lord appears. (9-11) Moses goes up into the mountain. (12-18)1-8 A solemn covenant was made between God and Israel. Very solemn it was, typifying the covenant of grace between God and believers, through Christ. As soon as God separated to himself a peculiar people, he governed them by a written word, as he has done ever since. God's covenants and commands are so just in themselves, and so much for our good, that the more we think of them, and the more plainly and fully they are set before us, the more reason we may see to comply with them. The blood of the sacrifice was sprinkled on the altar, on the book, and on the people. Neither their persons, their moral obedience, nor religious services, would meet with acceptance from a holy God, except through the shedding and sprinkling' of blood. Also the blessings granted unto them were all of mercy; and the Lord would deal with them in kindness. Thus the sinner, by faith in the blood of Christ, renders willing and acceptable obedience.

9-11 The elders saw the God of Israel; they had some glimpse of his glory, though whatever they saw, it was something of which no image or picture could be made, yet enough to satisfy them that God was with them of a truth. Nothing is described but what was under his feet. The sapphires are the pavement under his feet; let us put all the wealth of this world under our feet, and not in our hearts. Thus the believer sees in the face of Jesus Christ, far clearer discoveries of the glorious justice and holiness of God, than ever he saw under terrifying convictions; and through the Saviour, holds communion with a holy God.

12-18 A cloud covered the mount six days; a token of God's special presence there. Moses was sure that he who called him up would protect him. Even those glorious attributes of God which are most terrible to the wicked, the saints with humble reverence rejoice in. And through faith in the atoning Sacrifice, we hope for greater honour than Moses ever enjoyed on earth. Now we see through a glass darkly, but when he shall appear, then face to face. This vision of God will continue with equal, if not increasing brightness of joy; not for a few days only, but through eternity.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Exodus 24

  • Norm
    Matthew 11:15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear. Revelation 21:10 And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, Exodus Chapter 24:10 And they saw the God of Israel: and there was under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in his clearness. 1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him for we shall see him as he is. Hebrews 12:29 For our God is a consuming fire.
  • Karl
    open question; on exodus 24:10, what are the elders seeing here? Was this an interpretation of his presence constrained by human vocabulary/interpretation or simply the reverential description of the writer of this biblical book? Looking for insightful answers.
  • Dewey J
    Edwina Hawley, I by all Scripture disagree that Moses and his holy entourage actually saw God. Moses saw glimpses of God and his entourage saw even less over the years in the wilderness. This chapter talks about seeing clouds and a sapphire pavement for God 's feet but like Matthew Henry said in his commentary they did not see enough of God to create a sort of imagine. John 1:8 says, "No man hath seen God at anytime the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the father, he hath declared him ". 1 Cor. 13:12 says, "For now we see through a glass, darkly but then face to face: now I know in part but then shall I know even as also I am known ". To see God in his glory for a man would be like taking a trip to the Sun when he get near he would simply be destroyed. Imagine how bright our Holy God is. God bless us all and in the understanding of his Word. Glory be to Jehovah in the highest through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen!
  • Lilian
    God knows his own way to manifest us as his own people. His ways is higher than our ways and his thoughts is higher than our thoughts. He knows how to provide us his message and protection in any situation may have. Our God is true and there is no other God before him. Our Heavenly Father show 's his mercy and grace to his people because of his love he sent his only Son Jesus Christ to redeemed the world for us to be save and have life. Keep thanking God and praise Jesus for his blood that sheds for us. Jesus loves you and his words is true and purified 7 times.
  • I believe they saw Jesus. I believe the reason He said no one has seen the Father except the Son was because He was the Father and the Son. He was God Almighty and as Isaiah said it - the Everlasting Father. I can 't explain it but I believe it.
  • Edwina Hawley
    I understand that 70 elders AND Joshua actually SAW God, SPOKE with God and ATE with God. Believe THAT encounter was pivotal in the life of Joshua. He was a strong, warrior, a man used to using his OWN strength. This encounter took his focus off himself and put it on God. Off strong, tough, brave Joshua TO RELY on God 's "strange " methods to victory.

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Bible Trivia

Upon what mountain did Moses receive the commandments?
  • Sinai
  • Everest
  • Gilboa
  • Herzl
  • None