And Moses said unto the people, Fear not: for God is come to prove you …
How does God test our faithfulness and love toward Him? By an important list of characteristics that is contained within this chapter. The Ten Commandments! Many people take this as a list of regulations and restrictions, but never see the real meaning behind what is given in this chapter. It is actually a definition of love.
- Love For God (v.3-11)
- Love For Each Other (v.12-17)
What is interesting is that the people were more frightened by the outward manifestation of God’s presence (v.18-20) than by what He had given to them through Moses. God wants us to have a close relationship with Him, but He also wants us to know there are requirements for that relationship.
When the news tells us of unspeakable acts we do to one another and to our children, why do we wonder what the problem is in our nation? We have lost our way because we have turned our back on God. The plain truth is we don’t want the Ten Commandments because we are a people where real love is all but dead.
You see, if we have the right relationship toward God (v.3-11) we will have the right relationship toward one another (v.12-17). Isn’t that exactly what Jesus said in the New Testament (Mt.22:36-40)? Love is the fulfillment of the Law. Remember this verse:
1 John 4:18
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear …
Our fear is actually a thermometer of our relationship to God. The closer to God we become the less fear will affect us.