|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
12:18-29 Mount Sinai, on which the Jewish church state was formed, was a mount such as might be touched, though forbidden to be so, a place that could be felt; so the Mosaic dispensation was much in outward and earthly things. The gospel state is kind and condescending, suited to our weak frame. Under the gospel all may come with boldness to God's presence. But the most holy must despair, if judged by the holy law given from Sinai, without a Saviour. The gospel church is called Mount Zion; there believers have clearer views of heaven, and more heavenly tempers of soul. All the children of God are heirs, and every one has the privileges of the first-born. Let a soul be supposed to join that glorious assembly and church above, that is yet unacquainted with God, still carnally-minded, loving this present world and state of things, looking back to it with a lingering eye, full of pride and guile, filled with lusts; such a soul would seem to have mistaken its way, place, state, and company. It would be uneasy to itself and all about it. Christ is the Mediator of this new covenant, between God and man, to bring them together in this covenant; to keep them together; to plead with God for us, and to plead with us for God; and at length to bring God and his people together in heaven. This covenant is made firm by the blood of Christ sprinkled upon our consciences, as the blood of the sacrifice was sprinkled upon the altar and the victim. This blood of Christ speaks in behalf of sinners; it pleads not for vengeance, but for mercy. See then that you refuse not his gracious call and offered salvation. See that you do not refuse Him who speaketh from heaven, with infinite tenderness and love; for how can those escape, who turn from God in unbelief or apostacy, while he so graciously beseeches them to be reconciled, and to receive his everlasting favour! God's dealing with men under the gospel, in a way of grace, assures us, that he will deal with the despisers of the gospel, in a way of judgment. We cannot worship God acceptably, unless we worship him with reverence and godly fear. Only the grace of God enables us to worship God aright. God is the same just and righteous God under the gospel as under the law. The inheritance of believers is secured to them; and all things pertaining to salvation are freely given in answer to prayer. Let us seek for grace, that we may serve God with reverence and godly fear.
Verses 19-21. - And the sound of a trumpet (Exodus 19:16), and the voice of words (Deuteronomy 4:12); which voice they that heard entreated that no word should be spoken to them more (Deuteronomy 18:16; cf. ver. 25 and Exodus 20:18): for they could not endure that which was commanded (rather, enjoined), If even a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned (Exodus 19:13; "or thrust through with a dart" is an interpolation in the text from the passage in Exodus): and so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake (Deuteronomy 9:19, ἔκφοβός εἰμι, to which ἔντρομος is added in the text. This saying of Moses was really uttered afterwards, when he was descending from the mount, and became aware of the sin of the golden calf. It was called forth by the people's sin, but was due to the alarming character of the preceding phenomena, of τὸ φανταζόμενον, that which was being revealed or manifested. Mention of it is added here to show that the general fear extended even to Moses, the mediator). This whole account, thus powerfully condensed from Exodus and Deuteronomy, presents a vivid picture of the terrors of the Mosaic revelation. God was, indeed, revealed to man, but still as unseen and unapproachable, terrible in his wrath against sin, and surrounded by sounds and sights of fear. But now mark the serene and glorious contrast.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the sound of a trumpet,.... Exodus 19:16, which made it still more awful, as the sound of the trumpet will at the last day:
and the voice of words; of the ten words, or decalogue; which was as an articulate voice, formed by angels; and, therefore, the law is called the word spoken by angels, Hebrews 2:2 and is represented, as the voice of God himself, Exodus 20:1 who made use of the ministry of angels to deliver the law to Moses; "which" voice is called , "the voice of words", in Deuteronomy 4:12, and this voice,
they that heard, entreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more: fearing that they should die; wherefore they desired Moses to be their mediator, and draw nigh to God, and hear his words, and speak them to them, from him, Exodus 20:19.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
19. trumpet—to rouse attention, and herald God's approach (Ex 19:16).
entreated that the word should not be spoken—literally, "that speech should not be added to them"; not that they refused to hear the word of God, but they wished that God should not Himself speak, but employ Moses as His mediating spokesman. "The voice of words" was the Decalogue, spoken by God Himself, a voice issuing forth, without any form being seen: after which "He added no more" (De 5:22).
Hebrews 12:19 Parallel Commentaries
Hebrews 12:19 NIV
Hebrews 12:19 NLT
Hebrews 12:19 ESV
Hebrews 12:19 NASB
Hebrews 12:19 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible