TOO HOT TO HANDLE

       And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking:                  and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off. 

            And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear: but let not God speak with us, lest we die.                              Exodus 19:18-19 

 

          I was in the 7th Grade in Port Hueneme, CA in 1964/65 and our Science teacher was performing an experiment with various metals. He had a solid metal ring (about 2 inches in diameter) and attached to it were round bars of steel, iron, zinc, bronze, tin (3 or four inches long and about a ½ inch in diameter) and a couple others (no gold or silver!). 

          He had members of the class come up and just grasp the end of one of the bars while he heated the metal ring over a Bunsen Burner. He instructed us to let go of our bar when it got too hot to hold. 

          I don’t remember the order of which bar got the hottest first, second, etc. but for the first 3 groups of us, it was the same. When my turn came, I was given a bar that had been toward the last of the bars to get too hot. 

          I held on to the bar as the teacher held the ring over the open flame and one by one my fellow students dropped out. Suddenly, though, my bar grew too hot for me to hold so I let it go – out of order! Of course, some of the students began to make fun of me for being weak, but the teacher stepped in and reminded us that not everyone senses heat/cold the same. 

          Now consider the Children of Israel. They had witnessed, witnessed my friends! the plagues all around them in Egypt, yet they were untouched by them. They heard the anguished cries of the people of Egypt as their first born were taken by the Angel of Death, yet everyone in every house that had the blood of the sacrifice lamb on the door posts lived! 

          These were the ones who wailed in despair standing on the bank of the Nile River as the mighty army of Pharaoh was coming. And these were the people who watched from the other bank of the river, after moving through the dry ground that God had created when He split the water in half, as the mightiest army of its day was utterly destroyed! 

          Not to mention the Holy Spirit leading them by day and watching over them by night. Or the fact that God provided food and water for them! Yet! Yet! When it came time for them to commune with God – He was too much for them to handle! 

          “Oh, no, Moses! You tell God that He can talk with you and then you can tell us what He said!” 

          They thought, even after every miracle God performed for them, that He would take them into the desert and kill them. He was too hot for them to handle. 

          Thank God that we, Christians, have no cause to fear our God (respect, yes, but trembling in fear that He will mash us like a bug? No.) and that we can approach His throne with boldness to make our prayers known. 

          He is not “too hot to handle”! 


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