Mt. Sinai or Mt. Zion?

Mt. Sinai and Mt. Zion both are real places, but they are also symbolic.  Mt. Sinai is the place Moses received the ten commandments and represents the Law.  It represents legalism and works.  It represents fear.  Mt. Zion is where Christ was crucified.  It represents grace.  It represents Jesus’ blood that paid for our sins so that we may be forgiven and saved.  It represents heaven.  Many choose one or the other.  Which would you choose?  Of course, those who are believers and have accepted the grace that God has given us to be saved, it does not mean we ignore the ten commandments.  The difference is we want to honor God and be obedient to Him because of His grace and because we love Him, not so that we can earn favor with Him.  We cannot.  There is one way to salvation and that is through the cross.  It is through Jesus Christ and Jesus alone.

Hebrews 12:18-28

For you have not come to the mountain that may be touched and that burned with fire, and to blackness and darkness and tempest, and the sound of a trumpet and the voice of words, so that those who heard it begged that the word should not be spoken to them anymore. (For they could not endure what was commanded: “And if so much as a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned or shot with an arrow.”  And so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I am exceedingly afraid and trembling.”)

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But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect, to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel.

See that you do not refuse Him who speaks. For if they did not escape who refused Him who spoke on earth, much more shall we not escape if we turn away from Him who speaks from heaven, whose voice then shook the earth; but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.”  Now this, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain.

Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. For our God is a consuming fire.

The author of Hebrews tells us that on Mt. Sinai, the people are separated from God.  It is a place of darkness and all kinds of scary things.  Fear.  Death.  Darkness. Fire. The earth shakes.  Sin is revealed.

Exodus 19:10-20

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their clothes. And let them be ready for the third day. For on the third day the Lord will come down upon Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. You shall set bounds for the people all around, saying, ‘Take heed to yourselves that you do not go up to the mountain or touch its base. Whoever touches the mountain shall surely be put to death. Not a hand shall touch him, but he shall surely be stoned or shot with an arrow; whether man or beast, he shall not live.’ When the trumpet sounds long, they shall come near the mountain.”

So Moses went down from the mountain to the people and sanctified the people, and they washed their clothes. And he said to the people, “Be ready for the third day; do not come near your wives.”

Then it came to pass on the third day, in the morning, that there were thunderings and lightnings, and a thick cloud on the mountain; and the sound of the trumpet was very loud, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Now Mount Sinai was completely in smoke, because the Lord descended upon it in fire. Its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked greatly. And when the blast of the trumpet sounded long and became louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him by voice. Then the Lord came down upon Mount Sinai, on the top of the mountain. And the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up.

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 Exodus 20:18-21

Now all the people witnessed the thunderings, the lightning flashes, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking; and when the people saw it, they trembled and stood afar off. Then they said to Moses, “You speak with us, and we will hear; but let not God speak with us, lest we die.”

And Moses said to the people, “Do not fear; for God has come to test you, and that His fear may be before you, so that you may not sin.” So the people stood afar off, but Moses drew near the thick darkness where God was.

With Mt. Sinai, God told the people they must cleanse themselves to prepare for “the third day.”  But, Mt. Zion is different.  Jesus is raised on the third day.  Through His death and resurrection, we are cleansed.  Our sins are forgiven.  They are wiped away.  We are declared righteous.  Though we all fall short of God’s glory, Jesus, who is perfect, paid the price and became the sacrifice for our sins that whoever believes in Him will be saved and will have eternal life.

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Romans 8:1-11

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His. And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.

Thank God for Mt. Zion.  Our salvation comes from there.  When we accept Christ and His free gift of eternal salvation, our old self is dead, and He gives us newness of life.  He gives us His Spirit to guide us and give us strength.  We no longer live in the flesh but in the Spirit.  Let us be encouraged by this and allow Him to work in us so that we can become more mature Christians and be fruitful to further His kingdom.

Romans 7:4-6

Therefore, my brethren, you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another — to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God. For when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions which were aroused by the law were at work in our members to bear fruit to death. But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter.

My prayer is that this will encourage you and bless you.  My prayer is also that God will speak to the hearts of those that do not know Him, that they will seek Him, and accept His grace and be saved.

Author: davesdailyscriptures

I live in the far corner of Northeastern Washington with my beautiful wife. God has blessed me tremendously and so thankful for His grace and the people He has put in my life and His work in me.

2 thoughts on “Mt. Sinai or Mt. Zion?”

  1. Dave, thank you for this study on the Mountains. Such a wonderful way for God to show us the difference between our own ineffectual efforts to please Him, and Jesus’ effecatious effort on the Cross. He won the victory and we win too, as those who reside in Jesus.

    What a comfort, what joy, hallelujah!
    What clear and delightful encouragement for those who are in the Lamb of God. And a very clear warning for us who want God to approve and accept our sacrifice of vegetables.

    Thanks again.
    Sherry

    Like

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