The Israelites journeyed onward and encamped before Mount Sinai. There God talked with Moses, and instructed him to remind the people of the great things He had done for them; and to say that if they obeyed Him, and kept His covenant, they should be a peculiar treasure to Him above all people, and a holy nation.
When the people heard God's message, they answered, |All that the Lord hath spoken we will do.| How happy would they have been if they had always kept this promise! But, alas! they did not do so; and great punishments came upon them in consequence.
God also said that on the third day He would descend upon Mount Sinai; and commanded the people to prepare themselves for that great and solemn event. None were to approach the mount, for if they did so they would die. On the third day, according to the command, the people gathered before Mount Sinai. A thick cloud covered the mountain, which smoked and quaked, and there were thunders and lightnings; a trumpet also sounded exceeding loud, so that all the people trembled. Then God spake from the midst of the fire, and gave the people the Ten Commandments. These you will find in the twentieth chapter of Exodus; and little folks with sharp eyes can read them in our picture.
We are told that |all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking;| and when they saw it they were so much afraid that they stood afar off. How holy is God's law, and how careful should we be to obey it!
[Illustration: THE TEN COMMANDMENTS.]