In the Old Testament, Horeb (Sinai) is referred to as the “mountain of God” (Exodus 3:1,12). God used to call Moses and talk to him from that mountain (Exodus 19:3). It was from His mountain that God proclaimed the Ten Commandments. (Exodus 20)

When God wanted to talk to the prophet Elijah, He called him to Sinai. The mountain was shaken by storm, earthquake and fire and then God spoke to Elijah as if through a gentle breeze, reassuring Elijah that all will be well. (1 Kings 19)

David, when fleeing from his enemies, could say, “I call out to the Lord, and he answers me from His holy mountain.” (Psalm 3:4)

The mountain of God is holy. David asks, “Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord? Who may stand in his holy place?” And he answers his own question, “The one who has clean hands and a pure heart.” (Psalm 24:3)

But the Bible makes it clear that mountains are not to be worshipped. The prophet Amos says, “He who forms the mountains, who creates the wind, and who reveals his thoughts to mankind, who turns dawn to darkness, and treads on the heights of the earth – the Lord God Almighty is his name.” (Amos 4:13)

Faith is greater than mountains. Mountains can be moved, said Jesus, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed. (Matthew 17:20)

In India, millions of people have been climbing mountains, the abode of gods, since ages. Weather in the mountains of north India is uncertain, unreliable and hostile. The terrain is dangerous. And yet people have braved it all, just to experience the presence of god, be it only for a few moments. In the past, it was not uncommon for people never to return home from their arduous journey.

But now things have changed. People exercise their right to climb mountains at any time of the year, in any kind of weather, but they expect that the meteorological department is responsible for bringing them safely back home…!

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