The Importance of Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal

Gerizim and Mount Ebal, were separated from each other by about a mile and a half. Mount Ebal constantly reminded the people of their need of offering a sacrifice in order to mend their ways toward God and return to Him.  God, in His mercy, provided for Israel a way through an altar- a special one, to reconcile them to Himself, when they had sinned against Him. The altar instructed by God was of whole stone, over which no man has lifted any iron (Jos. 8:31). This speaks to us that our salvation is not the result of what we do, but it is a gift priced with the life of our Lord YAHSHUA. Paul said, for it is by grace that you are saved through faith. And this is not of yourselves but it is the gift of God. Not because of works, lest any man should boast (Eph. 2:8-9).  Living in Mount Ebal is to be under the curse. It is there, that one must render the sacrifice of repentance and contrition of heart to be released from the curse of sin. This altar was an altar that pointed to the coming altar offered by the person of our Lord YAHSHUA, when He was crucified on the cross. YAHSHUA is God’s way through Whom we can come to Him. He took upon Himself the curse from Mount Ebal, when He was crucified on a tree or a cross at Mount Golgotha or Calvary, outside Jerusalem. The cross constituted the symbol of Mount Ebal, where the curse of the Law was laid. YAHSHUA came and purchased our freedom from the curse of the Law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written, cursed is everyone who hang on a tree (Gal. 3:13). With that, He removed the curse of sin from men and reconciliated them to God; His perfect sacrifice ended with the words, It is finished! The Lamb of God is the only way through Whom we can be forgiven, washed clean from our sins, receive God’s grace and mercy and release from the curse of sin.

When the Law was given to Israel, in the third month after they left Egypt, God appeared to them in a tremendous manifestation of His holiness, through lightning, thunder and fire, as nature reacted to its Creator at His coming down to Mount Sinai to meet His people. At that time, He instructed them how to make an altar to Him: He said, An altar of earth you shall make to Me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and your peace offerings, your sheep and your oxen. In every place where I record My name and cause it to be remembered I will come to you and bless you. And if you will make Me an altar of stone, you shall not build it of hewn stone, for if you left up a tool upon it you have polluted it (Exodus 20: 24-25). This altar was a complete picture of the coming YAHSHUA’S perfect sacrifice to save mankind from the penalty of sin. From the beginning of time, we see by symbolism as well as by God’s direct words, His plan of salvation. At Mount Moriah, where God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac, we see the clearest picture of the future redemption of men.  It was at one of those mounts ranges that God’s Son laid His life to give life to the world.

YAHSHUA, having broken the curse of the Law by fulfilling it at Mount Golgotha or Calvary, Mount Ebal is no longer the place we must go to offer God the sacrifice of repentance, since Mount Calvary holds YAHSHUA’S blood’s stains proving His story of redemption. It is from there that His blood speaks mercy to all who will approach it with brokenness of heart and repentance. Power still flows from His blood even after two thousand years, for death has no power over the life of His blood, for He is the Author of life Himself. He laid down His life voluntarily; He said, No one takes (My life) from Me. On the contrary, I lay it down voluntarily (John 10:16,18). Because of His love for the human race, He suffered extensively, desiring that all should be free from the power of sin and its condemnation. He did not run away from the worst pain, but suffered all that was applied on His body, as a sacrificial Lamb in submission to its slaughter. Isaiah 53: 10 tells us that it was the will of the Lord to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief and made Him sick; verses 6b says, And the Lord has made to light upon Him the guilt and iniquity of us all. As Mount Ebal spoke of curse, Mount Golgotha speaks of forgiveness and redemption.

Mount Gerizim, the mountain of blessing through the works of the Law, is symbolic of today’s religion that teaches salvation through works; not only by the sacrifice of YAHSHUA on the cross. It is as if His sacrifice was not powerful enough to save men, but needed sinful men’s works to help themselves out. Imagine that! Sin cannot fight against sin. Much less save men from sin! Only the holiness of God can fight sin. YAHSHUA said, I am the Way, the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father except through Me (John 14:6). The way to Him is through the Mountain of Calvary. No other mountain will lead you to Him. It was there that He gave up His life to give you life; it was there that He suffered the pain of hell, so you did not have to; it was there that He prayed salvation for those who were crucifying Him; it was there that He accomplished on the altar of the cross His redemption for the world. Then He uttered the words, It is finished! What there is for you and I to do is to accept His gift of redemption and walk in the path of sanctification through YAHSHUA’S Holy Spirit. At the end of life, we will say together with YAHSHUA, It is finished!

Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

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