Background to the call of Abraham [Gen 11:24 – 32]
GENESIS 11:24-32 NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION (NIV)
GIVE FIVE PROMISES THAT GOD GAVE TO ABRAHAM
Ways in which Christians express their faith in God today
How do Christians in Kenya demonstrate their faith in God? (8 marks)
KCSE 2015 QUESTION 3(c) PAPER 1
How Christians in Kenya demonstrate their faith in God
Characteristics of God’ covenant with Abraham
Explain the characteristics of a covenant. (5 marks)
Characteristics of a covenant
Relevance of the promises to Christians today
The promises made to Abraham are important to Christians in several ways.
GODS’ PROMISES TO ABRAHAM WERE IRREVOCABLE COMMITMENTS
These are as follows;
The solution to this question can be retrieved from the book of Genesis (Genesis 15:9)
Genesis 15:9 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
9 He said to him, “Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon.”
Elements of the Jewish worship found in the Christian worship today
There are a number of elements of Israelite worship which have been carried over from the time of the Exodus to Judaism the early church and to the present time.
These elements include:
NB: The worship of God by the Israelites was more similar to that one of the Traditional African worship.
(EXODUS 19, 24:1 – 8)
Exodus 19 New International Version (NIV)
At Mount Sinai
19 On the first day of the third month after the Israelites left Egypt—on that very day—they came to the Desert of Sinai. 2 After they set out from Rephidim, they entered the Desert of Sinai, and Israel camped there in the desert in front of the mountain.
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[a] will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”
7 So Moses went back and summoned the elders of the people and set before them all the words the Lord had commanded him to speak. 8 The people all responded together, “We will do everything the Lord has said.” So Moses brought their answer back to the Lord.
9 The Lord said to Moses, “I am going to come to you in a dense cloud, so that the people will hear me speaking with you and will always put their trust in you.” Then Moses told the Lord what the people had said.
10 And the Lord said to Moses, “Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow. Have them wash their clothes 11 and be ready by the third day, because on that day the Lord will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. 12 Put limits for the people around the mountain and tell them, ‘Be careful that you do not approach the mountain or touch the foot of it. Whoever touches the mountain is to be put to death. 13 They are to be stoned or shot with arrows; not a hand is to be laid on them. No person or animal shall be permitted to live.’ Only when the ram’s horn sounds a long blast may they approach the mountain.”
14 After Moses had gone down the mountain to the people, he consecrated them, and they washed their clothes. 15 Then he said to the people, “Prepare yourselves for the third day. Abstain from sexual relations.”
16 On the morning of the third day there was thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast. Everyone in the camp trembled. 17 Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. 18 Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the Lord descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, and the whole mountain[b] trembled violently. 19 As the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him.[c]
20 The Lord descended to the top of Mount Sinai and called Moses to the top of the mountain. So Moses went up 21 and the Lord said to him, “Go down and warn the people so they do not force their way through to see the Lord and many of them perish. 22 Even the priests, who approach the Lord, must consecrate themselves, or the Lord will break out against them.”
23 Moses said to the Lord, “The people cannot come up Mount Sinai, because you yourself warned us, ‘Put limits around the mountain and set it apart as holy.’”
24 The Lord replied, “Go down and bring Aaron up with you. But the priests and the people must not force their way through to come up to the Lord, or he will break out against them.”
25 So Moses went down to the people and told them.
King James Version (KJV)
24 And he said unto Moses, Come up unto the Lord, thou, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel; and worship ye afar off.
2 And Moses alone shall come near the Lord: but they shall not come nigh; neither shall the people go up with him.
3 And Moses came and told the people all the words of the Lord, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the Lord hath said will we do.
4 And Moses wrote all the words of the Lord, and rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel.
5 And he sent young men of the children of Israel, which offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings of oxen unto the Lord.
6 And Moses took half of the blood, and put it in basons; and half of the blood he sprinkled on the altar.
7 And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the Lord hath said will we do, and be obedient.
8 And Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people, and said, Behold the blood of the covenant, which the Lord hath made with you concerning all these words.
God made a covenant with the Israelites at Mount Sinai in the wilderness. He brought them here so that he could enter into a personal relationship with the whole community of Abraham’s descendants.
God called Moses to the mountain to ask him if the Israelites were willing to obey. If they would obey Him, God made the following promises to them;
In readiness for the making of the Sinai Covenant, Abraham made the following preparations:
Questions to expect in examinations on topic
Give six lessons that Christians can learn about God from the renewal of the Sinai covenant.
Explain the Israelites new understanding of God as taught to them by Moses
Describe the call of Moses in Exodus 3:1-22
Describe how the Israelites broke the Sinai covenant Exodus 32:1-34.
Give four differences between the new covenants foretold by Jeremiah and the Sinaitic covenant
What are the Lessons we learn from the Breaking of the Sinai Covenant?
What were the conditions given to the Israelites renewal of the Sinai covenant?
Importance of circumcision to Abraham and his descendants
Meaning of the term Covenant
It is an agreement between two or more parties by which they exchange and accept obligations to one another. It is a serious or solemn agreement between two persons or groups of people. Other words used are “testament” “pact” or ‘treaty” It brings together two or more parties that have been separate before.
There are two types;
(i) Conditional covenant
It is an agreement/ a covenant between two or more parties which in fact are equal.
(ii) Unconditional covenant
It is a covenant between two unequal parties for example between God and his people.
Examples of well-known covenants in the Bible;
Elements of covenant
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