3 Then Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain and said, ‘This is what you are to say to the descendants of Jacob and what you are to tell the people of Israel: 4 “You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. 5 Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, 6 you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.” These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.’
Having led the Israelites out of Egypt and across the Red Sea, God brings them to Mount Sinai where he meets with Moses and makes this remarkable promise. Forget Leicester FC going from relegation battle to champions last year, this is the greatest turnaround, from a ragtag scrabble of slaves to God’s treasured nation! No one is beyond God’s love or attentiveness. But although God has selected them out of all nations, he has selected them for the nations too. To be ‘holy’ means to be set apart for God – they are to model a different way of life that is God focused, that points to him. To be a ‘priest’ means to stand between God and humanity, to be the go-between. This promise is later fulfilled in Jesus who lived a faithful God focused life, to see him was to see God, and who on the the Cross stood on our behalf before God, taking on himself all that is broken and sinful in our lives and suffering the consequences so that we might be set free from them.
Father, as we celebrate 12 Months of Mission this year, may we in some small way be like Christ and model you in our relationships with each other and bring you to our communities and our communities to you.