Donate/Tithe with Bank Deposit (direct to Mike Connell)

Ten Commandments (1 of 6)

Shane Willard

Page 8 of 10
“Remember the Sabbath Day, and keep it holy” - if we're going to be married, then: one day in seven, it's going to be just me and you.

This is what God did to keep His marriage together; He said: one day in seven; and seven times a year, we're going to leave everything and just be together.

God did everything He could do to make His marriage with the national of Israel work - but it just didn't. In the Book of Ezra (and in the Book of Jeremiah) it says: God had to divorce Israel, because of their continual marital unfaithfulness. They kept breaking their deal. He had to divorce them, for their continual marital unfaithfulness.

If you've been through a divorce, maybe this is for you. There's a scripture that says: I hate divorce; but we teach that as if: God hates divorced people. Maybe God's not saying: I hate divorce (as a matter of judgement); maybe He's saying (as a matter of understanding): I've been through it - I know, it stinks! I hate it for you; I hate it for the other person; I hate it for all the tears it's going to cause - I hate it.

Maybe that's what it was about? If God hates divorced people, then He hates Himself; because in the Book of Jeremiah, and the Book of Ezra, it says: He had to divorce Israel, because of their marital unfaithfulness. Who did He marry? You; me - we're the bride of Christ. He hates divorce.

This was all about a marriage. So this is what would happen: I would go and prepare a place for her, a marriage chamber. Then I'd come back and get her, and we'd have a wedding. At a wedding, there was step five: Huppah.

Huppah means 'under the presence'. Remember the prayer shawl?

There were two huppahs: the first huppah was the marriage altar - and we still have those today - when you see people get married under archways? You get married under archways - that was the first huppah; it was a marriage altar that talked about: when you get married, you're doing so ‘under the presence of God’.

The second huppah was in the marriage chamber. They would take bed posts and extend them up. Then they would tie the tassels around the four corners of the bed, and it made the prayer shawl a canopy over the bed. They thought of the ‘prayer shawl’ as the ‘presence of God’

It happened like this: me and my new wife would get married under the huppah. Then they would march us to the door of the wedding chamber, and I would pick her up to carry her into the marriage chamber - do you guys do that in New Zealand - it's a good idea for some, not so good for others... Some people ought to hold off on that tradition okay!

But they'd pick them up, and carry them under the threshold - and that's where we get the word ‘rapture’ from. The word ‘rapture’ simply means: ‘to pick your bride up’; and carry her into the place you prepared for her.

I would take her then into the wedding chamber, and they had tied the huppah over the bed. They would shut the door behind us, and we would go in and consummate our marriage ‘under the huppah’. So the consummation of the marriage would happen ‘under the presence of God’.

They would wait outside for us to be done! They were way more ‘open with their sexuality’ than we are! So they would wait outside for us to be done; and then we'd come out - and we'd have a party. That was huppah; so this was the five steps to the wedding program.

The Ten Commandments was not: 10 proofs that God would love you. It wasn't: 10 conditions for God to love you. It wasn't: you do this - and I'll love you. No, no, no, no...

The Ten Commandments was: 10 proofs He already did! It was God's attempt to make us free.

He opens the Ten Commandments this way: “I am the Lord your God”. Before they did anything right, or anything wrong, He said: “I am the Lord your God”. He said “Lakah” to them; before anything right or wrong.

This is not about God making a group of people good; it's about God making a group of people free.

Now I want you to look at the end of the Ten Commandments, and I want you to see huppah - Exodus 20:18.