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Welcome to St. John's community. We are honored to serve Christ, and to open our doors to all. Please feel free to join us for worship. St. John's can trace its history to the founding of Jamestown. The parish is over 350 years old, and the church building itself has stood for 2 and a half centuries. St. John's saw the American Revolution and served as a camp ground for troops during the Civil War. Through it all, St. John's has been a place of worship and a home for those seeking communion with Christ. St. John's has a rich and abiding history. Today, it is as it was... a place to find and be found by Christ.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Christian Education - October 16, 2011; 18 Pentecost Exodus 33:12-23 Moses’ Intercession

Theme: The Book of Exodus continues the story of the growth of life of the patriarchs. This portion of Exodus is the recording of the Sinaitic Covenant and beginning of Israel’s cycle of sin and repentance.

Background: Following Israel’s sin at Sinai after the first covenant is recorded and their receipt of the second set of the 10 Commandments Israel is sent away from Sinai. Their sojourn will be a time of cleansing and self-reflection but also a time of danger trekking in the inhospitable wilderness. They continue to look for God’s assurance that he will not destroy them in their sin.

Questions to Ponder
* What has happened in the life and story of Israel between their sin and the creation of the golden calf and today’s reading?
* What may be the cause of Moses’ interaction with God in the beginning of this passage?
* What might it mean for Moses to say that God knows him? How would God’s knowledge of Moses be an assurance to Moses?
* What might Moses be asking for when he asks to see God’s ways? How would knowing God’s ways be an assurance of God’s favor?
* Why might Moses remind God that Israel is God’s chosen people? Wouldn’t God already know that he had chosen Israel?
* As God interacts with Moses he tells Moses “my presence will go with you and I will give you rest.” What would the significance of God’s presence be in Moses’ life? Why would God’s rest be important to Moses? Is there some other way to view God’s “rest” in the life of Israel since he is directing them to leave and begin their sojourn in the wilderness?
* What might Israel fear that would lead Moses to need assurance that God was, in fact, with them and that God would make his presence with Moses known to all Israel?
* What might it mean to have God’s glory pass before Moses? How has God already had his glory pass before both Moses and Israel?
* How is verse 19b reminiscent of other parts of Moses relationship with God? How is this verse different than before?
* Why might God not allow a person to “see his face” and live? What would the significance of knowing what God actually looks like be?
* Why might God allow Moses (or anyone else) see his back but not his face? What analogy might you give to say that we see God’s back today?
* How do we let God give us rest? Is this the same kind of rest that he provided Moses?
* What are the implications of this reading for today?

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