This morning I read Exodus 19-20 and Psalm 41-42.

In Exodus 19, Moses meets w/ the LORD on Mt. Sinai for the first time in preparation for receiving the Law; the LORD required the people to clean themselves prior to the Law and orders them to not touch the mountain. In Exodus 20 the LORD gives the Moses the Ten Commandments.

The concept of “sabbath” is one that intreagues me. It is not until now that the LORD gives the Law concerning the Sabbath, but it was clearly important. The LORD rested on the seventh day, and He did not rain down manna on the seventh day of the week while Israel was in the wilderness, both directing them and allowing them to rest. How should the sabbath be kept now?

In Psalm 41, David cries out because his enemies are in “hot pursuit,” yet he relies on the LORD. Psalm 42 gives us a picture of how much David longs for the LORD: “as the deer…”

This weekend, I listened to John Piper‘s sermon on the life of John Bunyan; his emphasis was on the role that suffering had on Bunyan’s life and how that suffering caused “root growth” for Bunyan “through many dangers, toils, and snares” such as the death of his first wife, the birth of a child born blind, and many years in prison for his faith. Likewise, David bemoans his suffering in Psalm 41 by his enemies. One thing Piper states is that true, radical, biblical faith will be a faith that suffers, then he asks a question, the question: if you are not suffering, is your faith real? Suffering, according to Piper, is not fasting, or not being invited to parties, but suffering like that reported in The Voice of the Martyrs. American Christianity is (can I say it) quite shallow. I am an American Christian, and I have not suffered.

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