On the third month after leaving Egypt, the Israelites come to the Wilderness of Sinai and camp at the foot of Mt. Sinai. Moses heads up the mountain to have some alone time in prayer. God meets him with these words: “You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself. Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel.”
Moses relays the message to the people waiting below. They respond that they are ready to obey. So God arranges another meeting. This third-day encounter of the God-kind casts another shadow of things to come. “And the Lord said to Moses, ‘Behold, I come to you in the thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with you, and believe you forever. Go to the people and consecrate them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their clothes. And let them be ready for the third day. For on the third day the Lord will come down upon Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people’ ” (Ex. 19:9-11).
On the third day, the people hear a heavenly trumpet sound, and God comes down to the top of the mountain to meet with them. A thick cloud of smoke engulfs the mountain, as God descends in fire. The mountain quakes with the force of His presence. It marks a new stage in God’s chronos timetable.
The Chronos Lesson: We see these Day Code shadows throughout the Bible. They typically refer to the 7th Day when counting from Adam or the 3rd Day when counting from Christ. A New Testament equivalent is found in John 2. Great care is taken to describe two days of journeying to a wedding on the 3rd day. As with Moses, there are two days of preparation. On the 3rd day ordinary water is miraculously turned into fine wine, just as our ordinary bodies will be miraculously changed on the 3rd Day (the rapture). This first miracle announces that the Christ has come.
Paul tells us that our 3rd Day encounter is likewise marked by a trumpet call that leads to a meeting and a gathering together to celebrate. “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed—In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.” (1 Cor. 15:51-53). The Jews were instructed to wash their clothes to be ready for their 3rd day encounter. The Church is instructed to be cleansed with the washing of water by the Word in order to be ready for our 3rd Day encounter.
Moses had warned the people to stay below, for they could not bear to see God face to face. The fallen nature cannot stand before the Most Holy God without a covering from God. As believers, the blood of Jesus doesn’t just cover our sins, it removes them. We can come boldly before the throne of grace (Heb. 4:16). That is the awesome power of the New Covenant. On the Third Day, the Church shall meet her Bridegroom. The two shall become as One.
“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9).