MOSAIC Spring 2016 - Page 39

THE LIVING WORD Reading Scripture from the Heart of the Church The Living Mercy Seat Dr. Mary Healy I s the God of the Old Testament a harsh and vengeful God, in contrast to the God of the New? On the contrary, in the Old Testament God first reveals the depths of his mercy. It was after Israel committed its most egregious sin, the idolatry of the golden calf, that the Lord passed before Moses and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, continuing his steadfast love for a thousand generations” (Ex 34:6-7). ing away of sins.”) Each year, on the Day Even more, God provided a visible way that his people could continually receive of Atonement, the high priest would enter his mercy. He instructed Moses to build the Holy of Holies and sprinkle the blood of a sacrificed bull and goat on the Mercy the wilderness tabernacle, a movable tentSeat, making atonement for Israel’s sins (Lev sanctuary in which God would dwell in the midst of his people as they journeyed to- 16:14-16) so the Israelites could continue in fellowship with the living God. ward the Promised Land. Inside the tabernaCherubim had special significance becle was an inner room, the Holy of Holies, and inside the Holy of Holies was the Ark cause they are first seen in the Garden of of the Covenant, the most sacred vessel on Eden after the Fall, barring the way to the Tree of Life (Gen 3:24). These creatures that earth. The Ark held three holy objects: a jar of manna, the rod of the high priest Aaron represented God’s just judgment on sin, on paradise lost, are now a sign of God’s that had miraculously blossomed, and the tablets of the Ten Commandments. These merciful forgiveness of sin. They gaze down reminded the people of the covenant God on the Mercy Seat in humble amazement. made with them and his gracious provision They testify that God’s plan for humanity is a return to paradise! for a Z\YY˂\ۙ\[\]]H[YۚYx'][]X[B\HY\HX]ق[\وH\\›^\\N\\[\[Hݙ[[\š]ݙ\HXو\B\H[\\[ۋBۛHHܙ\Y[™ۈX\B[\X[K^X][ۈ܈\[˸'Hو]\YK'܈]\[\XB]\YBܙX]\\]Z\[]XY ݙ\Y[]Hو[[]ZH]^BH\ˈ\ݙ\\[YHY\H['H X L K8&\[H\H[X] X]\H]\\H]X[KH\]H[X\H[ ZH\Y\Y\K YH[][ۜ[\[\Y ^\܈HYY\ ]H]X]ܞK܈8'XHوH\ H[][H[[\HHوY\‚ۛHۘHHYX\HY\HX]\\Y8&\[H[\[H[[][BܙX]\Y\H]\YKHܙYZܙ܈HY\HX]\[\\[ۋ[X[ ΌK][]X[B^\\N\\[\[\H[\\[ۋB^X][ۈ܈\[ˈ]H[و\™X]ۈHܛHZ[وH[\x%HZ[]YٙX\HHقY\%\ܛ[HBZ MN K\ ܛ[ܝ\YHB[و[X[]K\[YH^H[H\HX\و H\Z\YBHXY \[Y[X][[[\YHYKX][HX\XH]\›ۈ XZ[]ۙ[Y[܈[B[Z][\X[[ۋ[ܜ\[ۈق[[[X[Z[˂8&\[H\H[]YۙY[H[\[8&\\[H[]™HH[^]\XH[Z[و][BY\H ًX MKHY\HX]\\\H8'[\\ݙK]HݙY]]HݙY\[[\ۈBH^X][ۈ܈\['H H L KX\HX[H\ٙ\܈وXܙYܚ\\B]XܙYX\