“Now the Lord said to Moses, “Cut out for yourself two stone tablets like the former ones, and I will write on the tablets the words that were on the former tablets which you shattered.” (Exodus 34:1)
After the incident with the Golden Calf back in Exodus 32, God could very easily have wiped out the Hebrew nation and started all over again with Moses. In fact, the Lord would have been justified in doing so. God had given His Law to the people and the people had agreed to its terms and pledged to obey it at all points (Exodus 19:8). Yet the first time Moses went away from the people in order to meet with the Lord they broke their promise and violated the Covenant they had been given.
But this is not where the story ends! God had mercy on the Israelites and did not destroy them all when they sinned. The Lord gave the people another chance and restored His Law to them even though they had broken it.
One of the most wonderful attributes of our God is that He is a God of Second Chances. In actuality, He is a God of many chances. If the Lord were to deal “fairly” with us, He would have blotted us out long ago. If the Lord dealt with us based upon our own behavior, we would all be doomed. Thankfully, He does not.
At the sight of the Hebrews descent into depravity, Moses reacted by casting down the Tablets of the Law, shattering them to pieces (Exodus 32:19). This served as a physical breaking of a Law which the people had figuratively broken. It has been suggested that, not only was Moses’ response one of anger, but of fear and pity for the people. Moses was one of the only people among them who truly understood the reality of how terrible it would be to fall into the hands of the Living God! Were it that this Law in his hands be shattered into pieces rather than the Lord God carry out His judgments for violating it!
“Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time, saying,” (Jonah 3:1)
Jonah 3:1 is one of my favorite verses in the entire Bible. The Word of the Lord came to Jonah a second time. How did Jonah respond when the Word of the Lord came to him the first time? He ran as fast as he could in the opposite direction! But the Lord was not finished with Jonah after the first time he rebelled against Him any more than He was finished with Israel when they abandoned Him for the Golden Calf. He is the God of Second Chances and His Word will return even to the heart which has turned against Him.
Where are you today? Have you rejected the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the point where you are not sure if any hope remains for you? Or are you a child of God who has backslidden time and time again and are wondering if you may have exhausted the patience of the Lord? If you have blown your first, second, or ten thousandth chance, God is not through with you. Even if you have turned away from Him, He has not given up on you. His Word is coming to you again. Behold, He stands knocking at the door (Revelation 3:20). Will you hear His voice and let Him in?
To God goes all glory. In service to Him,
**Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) © The Lockman Foundation and are used by permission.
[If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ or you are not certain where you are headed when this life ends, I invite you to read the article "Am I Going To Heaven?"]