Lectionary Calendar
Monday, May 20th, 2024
the Week of Proper 2 / Ordinary 7
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Bible Commentaries
Exodus 19

The Church Pulpit CommentaryChurch Pulpit Commentary

Verse 5


‘Ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto Me.’

Exodus 19:5

Israel was called to infinite privilege. She was called to be:—

I. God’s choice possession.—‘Ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto Me.’ As jewels worn upon the person, as the pick of all His wealth, His chosen treasure, were they to be. Even so, the Spiritual Israel, the Church, is called to be ‘His Body, the fulness of Him who filleth all in all’; and His Bride, destined to a glorious beauty that even He will rest in and rejoice over, for ever and ever.

II. A royal priesthood—‘a kingdom of priests’ ( v. 6). A priest is one who stands midway as a medium between God and man, being one with both. He is appointed of God to be the channel of His blessing to others. A glorious calling! It is yours, as well as mine, for every believer is in one sense a priest. To him has the Lord said:—‘I will bless you, and make you a blessing.’

III. An holy nation.—The Hebrew word has two ideas bound up in it;—( a) Holy— separated. The Blood, the Covenant, and the Presence of God separate from the world and unto God. ( b) Holy— splendid, beautiful, pure. So believers are called to ( a) separation and ( b) beauty—the splendid loveliness of God.

IV. The response, alas! was that of the self-sufficient. ‘All that the Lord hath spoken unto us will we do.’ Here is the secret of their terrible failure. Had they but known and confessed their inability to do, God would have shown them His way of grace. But, not knowing, they chose the law, to their undoing.


(1) ‘The excessive care about invading the sanctity of the mount was the beginning of a vast system of ceremonial design, by outward symbols to teach the people the holiness of God, as being altogether apart from their own conceptions and habits of life. It is only thus that we can acquire any conception of the nature of that holiness which is God’s distinctive property.

(2) ‘Out of cloud-mists God weaves rainbows. He puts His bow in the cloud. Be of good cheer, the storm shall not overwhelm, for the clouds are as the dust of His feet.’

Bibliographical Information
Nisbet, James. "Commentary on Exodus 19". The Church Pulpit Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cpc/exodus-19.html. 1876.
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