Day 28: The Burning Bush

Exodus 3:1-10 As part of his plan of salvation, God called forth a leader and mediator for his people-Moses-who carried God’s message to the Israelites and led his people out of their enslavement in Egypt. Moses’ encounter with God at the burning bush was a pivotal moment in salvation history. Although resistant at first, Moses embraced the will of God and his role in leading his people out of Egypt. (CCC 203-214, 2574-2475)

Ch 3:4-10 God’s call to Moses took place in four steps: God called Moses by name; he revealed himself as the God of the patriarchs; he revealed his plan for the Israelites, his Chosen People; and he gave Moses a mission to fulfill. (CCC 203-214, 2167, 2575)

Ch 3:5 Removing one’s shoes and covering one’s face are signs of reverence in the presence of God. In the Old Testament, it was believed a person would die if he or she were to look upon the face of God. (CCC 208, 2777)

Ch 3:6-12 I am the God...of Jacob: God was telling Moses that he is the one who made the covenants with the patriarchs and that he would remain faithful to his promises. Moreover, he would continue to show a special predilection for his Chosen People. (CCC 205, 207)

Ch 3:7 The enslavement of the Israelites in Egypt is seen in catechetical tradition as one of the sins that cry to heaven. (CCC 1867)

Ch 3:13-22 I AM WHO I AM: In revealing his name, God made known both WHO HE IS and HOW HE SHOULD BE ADDRESSED, thus beginning a new and MORE PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP with his people. The fact that he gave his name for the first time indicates that God is not aloof but personally solicitous and deeply interested in his people. Out of reverence, the Jews did not pronounce the name YHWH but usually referred to God as “the Lord.” (CCC 205-206, 446, 2666, 2810)

Leviticus 2:1-16 Cereal offerings involved the burning of agricultural products along with incense. The fact that some of the harvest was offered in sacrifice may indicate that the Israelites had found some stability in their place of residence and could plant and harvest crops. The use of incense suggests an offering of praise to God. (CCC 1334)

Ch 2:11 Leaven, a yeast that causes fermentation, was viewed as “unclean.” Salt functions in the OPPOSITE MANNER, preserving food from corruption and fermentation and, thus, symbolized the Israelites’ faithful commitment to God’s covenant with them. Christ used the terms “leaven” and “salt of the earth” as metaphors to define the power of the followers of Christ to influence those around them. (CCC 782, 854, 940, 2660, 2832)

Ch 3:6-17 The animal offering had to represent the best specimen of the flock, offered in thanksgiving to God. The burnt portion was food offered to God, while the unburnt portion was eaten by the priest and those who shared in the offering. It was thus considered a SHARED MEAL as a sign of communion with God. This type of offering is a type (TYPOLOGY!!) of the Eucharist instituted by Christ. (CCC 1328)

Psalm 45 As in the Song of Solomon, this psalm uses the language of spousal love in marriage, giving a glimmer of God’s love for his people. The psalmist went to great lengths to describe the physical beauty of the bride and the bride-groom and the great joy of their nuptial celebration. The scene foreshadowed Christ’s proclamation of the Kingdom of God symbolized by the depiction of the marriage feast of the Lamb related in the Book of Revelation (cf. Rev 19:7-8). There is also the allusion to the progeny resulting from this spousal union. The queen-bride mentioned in this psalm, according to Christian tradition, refers to Mary, the PERFECT MODEL for the Church given her heroic obedience to the will of her divine Son. (Cf. St. John Paul II, General Audience, October 6, 2004)

The description of the king-groom in this psalm does not fit any of the historical kings of Israel of Judah, so it likely connotes a FUTURE KING, the Anointed one who would be the Messiah. Thus, it becomes a prophetic psalm about Christ with references to his everlasting kingdom. Your divine throne endures...above your fellows: The Epistle to the Hebrews (cf. Heb 1:8) cites these verses as having been uttered by God the Father to his Son, Jesus Christ at the moment of his Incarnation. At your right of Ophir: Church scholars associate these words with Mary, the Queen of Heaven and Earth, and use this verse to support the dogma of her ASSUMPTION INTO HEAVEN; this psalm is prayed at the Mass during the day on the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and other Marian feasts. Hear, O daughter...bow to him: The Epistle to the Ephesians and the Book of Revelation use the image of the bridegroom and the bride to speak of the relationship between Christ and his Church; there is a similar analogy in Hosea, where God has the prophet marry the unfaithful Gomer as an allegory for his covenant with Israel, which in turn prefigures Christ’s New Covenant with his Church (TYPOLOGY!!). From a certain perspective, the queen can be seen as the Church, the People of God, to whom Christ the Bridegroom gives himself totally, calling for a reciprocal response from his beloved Bride, the Church. (CCC 559, 695, 783)

(*The Didache Bible RSV-CE Ignatius Edition, 2006)

Key Event 16: The Burning Bush (Exodus 3:1-6:30)

God appears to Moses in the burning bush, where Moses asks the Lord his name. He responds, “I AM WHO I AM” and reveals His name as Yahweh, which is related to the Hebrew verb “to be”. Israel’s God is not a mere local deity but the one who eternally IS and who holds all things in existence.  

(*Walking With God: A Journey Through the Bible by Tim Gray and Jeff Cavins) 

Prayer by Fr. Mike: "Father in Heaven, we thank you. Once again, we thank you for your Word. We thank you for the gift of yourself. We thank you for being with us with your Grace. We know that we can trust you in all things. We know that we can rely upon you in every moment of our lives. And so, this moment, and with these things in our lives, we trust you. We declare you are good. We declare that you are faithful. We receive your love and we rest in your peace. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen."


What do the burning bush and Jesus have in common? The manifestation of God's presence, or God himself, among man.

A quick look at how the cereal offering also prefigures Jesus and the Eucharist.

Where do we see the Peace Offering fulfilled? Again, at the Last Supper as told in John's Gospel, when Jesus, the Prince of Peace, says, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you." Said in the discourse of the Eucharist at the Last Supper, and likewise, just as the priest says in the Liturgy of the Eucharist.