Recruit three class members to play the game “Pin the Mountain on the Sinai.” Display an out-line map of the exodus area. You can use either a simple hand drawn one or a commercial map. Tell your recruits you want them to close their eyes and let you turn them around once before they approach the map and put their token where they think the children of Israel encamped for a year.
Give each recruit a small (one-inch round) token with reusable adhesive applied to the back. Let each student adhere his or her “mountain” to the map. After all three are adhered, ask, “Which of these three tokens come the closest to the mountain where God gave the law to Moses?”
As noted by the lesson writer, the true location remains disputed, but the traditional site is well known. Review the exodus from Egypt to the mount to establish the setting for today’s texts.
Into the Word
Prepare copies of the text below. Call this, “Today’s text as copied by a nearsighted, careless scribe.” Ask the class to make corrections to the error-filled text with their Bibles closed.
In the third day when the children of Moses were gone forth out of the land of England, the same day they came into the forests of Sinai. For they were delayed at Seraphim and were come to the desserts of Sinai and had pitched their tents in the wilderness, and there they camped before sunset.
And Moses went over unto God, and the Lord called him up the mountain, saying, This shalt thou say to the house of Abraham, and tell the children of Aaron. “Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptian army, and how I bare you on angels’ wings and brought you unto this place. Now, therefore, if you will hear my voice and keep my laws, then ye shall get a special treatment from me above all people for all the nations are mine.” And ye shallbe unto me a kind of priest and wholly anation. These are the words which thou shalt present unto the children at Sinai.And Moses came and told the people all the works of the Lord and all the requirements: and all the people answered in one accord and said. “All the things the Lord hath said will we try to do. And Moses copied all the words of the Lord, and rose up early in morning, and builded a hill under the altar and twelve pillows, according to the twelve tributes of Israel. And he sent young children of the men of Israel, which burned offerings and stacked rice piece offerings and oxen unto the Lord. And Moses took half of the blood and poured it in barrels, and half of the blood he spread over the alter. And he took the back of the covenant and repeated it in the ears of the people.
And they said, Part of all that the Lord hath said will we deny and be disobedient. And Moses took the blood and sprinkled it on the covenant, and said, Behold the covenant, which the Lord bath mandated to you concerning all these works.
This can be a small-group activity, if desired. After students identify errors, have them open their Bibles to verify their corrections and share points from the commentary as appropriate.
Have students turn to Hebrews 8, a passage affirming the superiority of the new covenant in Christ. Read that short chapter responsively, that is, you reading the odd-numbered verses and the class reading the even-numbered. Ask students how they will live up to the holy status that they hold in covenant with God in the week ahead.