Pentateuch: Exodus 19-24

A study on the book of Exodus

Learn how you can use the guide here.

Weddings are beautiful events. If you have attended a wedding, it is hard to ignore the romance in the air, and the electrifying mutual affection shared between the newlyweds. At the same time, a wedding can be a complex process. If you have been married, you will know that a marriage process takes place in stages, starting from the engagement and all the way through to the actual ceremony, signing of contracts, and ending off with a grand feast.

Contrary to secular belief, marriage is not just a simple expression of love shared between two individuals madly passionate about each other. Neither is marriage just “a piece of paper”. Marriage is God’s idea, and we will actually get to see how it plays out through this section in the book of Exodus! May this study move you as you understand the heart of God expressed through a marriage covenant process.

Pre-Video Reading

Read Exodus 19-24.

Watch the video

Supplementary Reading

Application Questions

  1. Read Exodus 19:1-6.

    a. In the study video, it was mentioned that the phrase “treasured possession” in Hebrew is the word ‘segulla’ סְגֻלָּה. This refers to the royal King’s most prized and unique treasure (see Ecclesiastes 2:8, also Psalm 135:4, Deuteronomy 7:6, 14:2, 26:18). How does it make you feel that God would call His people His most treasured and prized possession?

    b. While this verse specifically refers to God’s relation to Israel, does it apply to us as well? (See Romans 11:17) How does it make you feel that this promise could also be extended to you?

  2. Read Exodus 19:7-25.

    a. What are some characteristics that you can describe God in this portion of scripture?

    b. What does this say about the way we should relate to God?

  3. Read Exodus 20:1-17.

    a. Compare these to the two greatest commandments that Jesus had mentioned in Matthew 22:37-40? Are they the same, or different?

    b. Do you think these Ten Commandments still apply to us today? You can also refer to Matthew 5:17-47.

    c. What do these Ten Commandments reveal about God’s heart for the people?

  4. Read Exodus 21:1-23:22. You may also watch this video for help on how to view biblical laws.

    a. What are the purposes of such laws?

    b. How do these laws reveal God’s wisdom and heart for His people?

    c. In what way are such laws relevant to us? What can they teach us, and do they apply to us today? Why, or why not?

    d. Were the laws put in place for Israel to abide by them completely? Why or why not?

Closing Reflection

After understanding that the entire process between Exodus 19-24 is a marriage ceremony between God and Israel, it could almost feel daunting that the marriage contract comes with so many laws that seem so hard to follow, especially when many of us know that Israel had failed to obey them later on.

However, rather than look at laws as a set of rules to follow, let us allow the rules to reveal God’s heart for His people. Behind it all is a desire for His segulla to be holy and righteous so that they can draw close to Him and not stand far away as they were required to in Exodus 19:7-25.

Furthermore, God had given these laws to reveal Israel’s inability to depend on their own goodness, but to look to Him for a Saviour. These laws, as we know, would eventually point us to Jesus, who is the only One who fulfils the law completely (Matthew 7:17). He not only embodied these laws perfectly but paid the price of sin for us on the cross so that we could be holy and righteous before God forever, thus giving us the ability to commune in intimacy with Him.

Let’s reflect on these acts as a testimony of God’s intense love and desire for us, and choose to draw near to Him today, for He desires us to, and has even given us that very opportunity to do so.

Prayer: Connecting with God

Ask God to help you live out the two greatest commandments, which are loving Him and loving His people. You can also ask Him to give you a revelation of His love as a Bridegroom towards His Bride, the church. Are there any reasons that might keep you distant and unable to draw near to Him in an intimate way? Ask Him to reveal these reasons and help you to release them to Him so that you can enjoy an unhindered relationship with Him, as He has desired.