an altar of stones

four rock formation

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an altar of stones

Deuteronomy 27:4-8 (JDV)

Deuteronomy 27:4 When you have crossed the Jordan, you are to set up these stones on Mount Ebal, as I am commanding you today, and you are to cover them with plaster.
Deuteronomy 27:5 Build an altar of stones there to Yahveh your God – do not use any iron tool on them.
Deuteronomy 27:6 Use uncut stones to build the altar of Yahveh your God and offer ascending offerings to Yahveh your God on it.
Deuteronomy 27:7 There you are to sacrifice offerings for healthy relationships, eat, and enjoy the face of Yahveh your God.
Deuteronomy 27:8 Write clearly all the words of this instruction on the plastered stones.”

an altar of stones

The altar was to be the place to feast and celebrate the presence of God among the Israelites, and the sacrifice was to ensure that the Israelites would have healthy relationships (shalom) among themselves, and between them and their God.

Later, an Israelite prophet would see a vision of a stone coming out of a mountain without human hands, which would topple the image representing human kingdoms.

The whole Mosaic sacrificial system was itself prophetic of the coming king and his kingdom — a new relationship with God made possible by his sacrifice of his Son.

As part of that system, the altar the Israelites were to build could not be fashioned by iron tools. There could be no indication that this coming kingdom would be man-made.

Lord, we surrender to your kingdom today. We don’t want to make you into our image; we want you to make us into yours.

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About Jefferson Vann

Jefferson Vann is pastor of Piney Grove Advent Christian Church in Delco, North Carolina. You can contact him at -- !
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