The rejected God

After the Israelites made a golden calf for themselves, YHWH decided that he would not go up among the Israelites, lest he would consume them on the way, since the Israelites were a stiff-necked people. Even worse, Moses took a tent and pitch it outside the camp of the Israelites, far off from the camp, and he called it the tent of meeting. And everyone who sought YHWH needed to go out to the tent of meeting, which was outside the camp (Exo 33.1-7).

A tragedy, indeed, since it symbolically means that YHWH was not in the midst of them anymore. The Israelites have rejected YHWH for a golden calf, and now YHWH was located outside the camp. YHWH was rejected by his own people.

And the Son was rejected as well. He was rejected by his own people, although he longed to gather them together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings. And yet Jerusalem rejected him. He was crucified outside Jerusalem, just as YHWH was placed outside the camp of the Israelites.

Paradoxically, to meet the true God, you need to go outside Jerusalem. You need to meet the Rejected One. You need to meet the Crucified. Indeed, ‘that’s why we should go outside the camp to Jesus and share in his disgrace.’ (Heb 13.13)

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