Jesus begins His public ministry with what is usually referred to as “the Sermon on the Mount”, found in Matthew Chapters 5, 6, and 7. It is in this way that God chooses to have his “only begotten Son” begin his public ministry: sitting down on a “mountainside”. Matthew records for us that Jesus “saw the multitudes”, and “when He was set, be began to teach them, saying …”. It’s no accident that God chooses to have Jesus begin what was to be his campaign to the cross in this manner, but no man would have done it this way. We would have expected some momentous event, an event even more spectacular than the one in which God delivered the Ten Commandments to Moses on Mount Sinai. For many years, as the writer of Hebrews says, God had spoken to man directly in various ways through the patriarchs, and hence the Patriarchal Age. But now, God was ready for a new way of dealing with mankind, and the children of Israel, having been miraculously delivered from bondage in Egypt, are gathered at the foot of Mount Sinai. The account in Exodus 19 reveals that on the third day, God’s GLORY was demonstrated in the most dramatic way I can conceive of: there was on the mountain fire, smoke, hail, thunder, the voice of an extremely loud trumpet, an earthquake, a tornado, and a thick, dark cloud. We don’t know if it was all at once, or in a sequence we know not of, but I see it all occurring simultaneously. This, in my judgment, was none other than God demonstrating his GLORY–His power, magnificence, etc. in a way which was even greater than the way He had recently delivered the Israelites out of the hand of the Pharoah. It is difficult to find words to express the exact meaning of the word GLORY. The Hebrew word denotes rank, highness, richness, royalty, greatness. For example, 1 Chronicles 29:11, “Thine, or Lord, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty…”. It certainly seems that all of those terms apply to what the people of Israel were witness to on that day on Mount Sinai. And that was God’s way of announcing His new way of dealing with mankind. You would expect an even greater demonstration, an even more spectacular series of events when God, at the right time, brings His Son into the world, which is what He had planned “even before the foundations of the world”. But when Jesus begins what is to be the transition from the Law of Moses to the Law of Christ, there is no fire, no smoke, none of these things. Only the voice of Jesus. This was to be the beginning of GLORY for all those who profess the name of Jesus Christ.

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