Before we move on to the 10 Commandments, I thought I’d linger a little on the story of God meeting Moses and his people on Mt. Sinai.
We see other instances where God comes to Earth in human form (Jesus, wrestling with Jacob), we know that the Holy Spirit shows up elsewhere, but God wanted (for a time) to dwell among his people in Godly form. At first he didn’t have a place that would hold his holiness without destroying everything around him – so he sits on a mountain and calls his people up there (carefully). Later he gives really, really detailed instructions on how to create the tabernacle. Still later he gives more detailed instructions on how to build the temple.
I guess this is why it is such an incredible thing that the curtain in the Holy of Hollies was torn upon Christ’s death. God is setting up the Law and establishing how holy He is and what we would have to do to deserve to be in his presence (a lot). Once Christ comes, he bridges the gap and gives us free access to God. The the Holy Spirit takes up residence in hour hearts rather than any particular tabernacle or temple.
God could have cut to the chase and done that from the start, but it seems that he’s telling a story and making a point. Just like he could have taken the people out of Egypt at the blink of an eye, but he wanted to teach us a lesson. That lesson seems to be – I’m the all powerful, all loving God.