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Ministry Musings August 2019
“Mountain top experience”
A few weeks ago we were fortunate enough to spend a few days in Keswick, a market town in the North Lakes, which attracts walkers of all abilities.
We were lucky to have a friend who acted as a guide and led a walk which included a climb of just over 1000'. It was quite steep to the top but worth the effort, the panoramic view of lakes and mountains were stunning. God’s creation is stunning!
This wasn't a mountain by any means, but it did made me think. Why do people climb mountains? It is a popular thing to do, as we see on the news, queues of people climbing Snowdon and even Everest. Challenge ?achievement ? the view?
Mountains often had a significant role in God’s dealing with people.
We have the expression “mountain top experience”. This has originated from the bible because of the dealings God had with his people on various “mountain tops”. The phrase has come to mean a moment of transcendence or epiphany and in particular an experience of significant revelation given by God.
It was on the Mountains of Ararat that Noah's Ark came to rest after the flood and God made a covenant with Noah. The rainbow being the promise that never again would a flood destroy all living beings.
On Mount Horeb, God called Moses and spoke to him through a burning bush, which changed the nation of Israel’s destiny.
On Mount Sinai God revealed His character to Moses and gave him the Ten Commandments, rules of life we need to adhere to.
On Mount Carmel Elijah challenged the false prophets of Baal to a contest to see which God would answer by fire. Of course, it was the Lord who demonstrated His power that day.
After this, Elijah's life was in danger, so he went to Sinai, the holy mountain. There God told him to go to the top of the mountain and met with him in the still small voice or gentle whisper.
Jesus taught His disciples on the Mount of Olives and He was transfigured on a mountain. Moses and Elijah were both seen talking with Jesus on that mountain.
So, mountains are symbolic of God’s revelation to man. God gives the “mountain-top experience” in order to teach or sustain His people as they go back down the mountain and on through the valley. His revelation is always intended to help us journey with Him more closely on the road ahead.
For Moses that journey was to lead Gods people to the promised land. For Elijah it was to confront wickedness in the land and appoint the next prophet. For Jesus it was the journey to the cross for our sake.
For us, we journey on, following the path of Jesus, called to discipleship, called to love one another, called to forgive each other, called to look up...
“I look to the mountains; where will my help come from?
My help will come from the Lord, who made heaven and earth”
( Psalm 121. GNB)
Thanks be to God.......