Exodus, Chapter 20

Friday, June 26


Exodus, Chapter 20:1-2


I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the
house of slavery.

Each time the 10 commandments are listed in the Old Testament, in Deuteronomy, and in Exodus, there is a preface which declares the relationship between God and the Israelites, and the acts in which their relationship stands. The one who will command such things is the God who has been in relationship with these people, the God who brought these people from captivity and into freedom. The commands rest on this relationship and these acts. In this way, God doesn’t make demands absent from a relationship rooted in acts of liberation. God has done the messy work of hearing their cries, calling them forth, and leading them through the baptismal waters in the Red Sea, and through deserts. That is the kind of God we serve. God does the messy work of hearing our cries, calling us forth, and leading us from captivity and into freedom. On the other side of baptismal waters, we are claimed as God’s children. Jesus summarizes the law, and says, love God and love neighbor. May we consider these commands as ones that are rooted in a relationship with a God who has set us free.


Why do you think God declares who he is before making commands? Would it matter if God hadn’t freed the Israelites, and yet still gave them the commandments? If we took Jesus’ summary seriously, this day, how might we show our love to God and our neighbor?


God of all creation, you have brought us forth from the chains of our oppression. Through Jesus Christ, you have set us free, for the purposes of bringing you all honor and glory. Thank you for being a God who will enter into the mess of creation and our lives. May we never forget all that you have done, and may we grow tired in passionately pursuing every effort to love you and our neighbor. Amen.


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