Seeing the Glory of God

Moses was a great man and mighty servant of God. Many movies and books have been written about this great historical figure. Moses was an adopted son and became a prince of Egypt. He was ultimately abandoned into exile by his royal family, when he found the truth of his own lineage and killed one of the task-masters in Egypt who was beating an Israelite slave. He began to understand the sufferings of his own people.

God spoke to Moses while he was in exile, through a bush that burned, without the effect of being burnt. Through various miraculous signs God Almighty performed Moses was successful in seeing his own people freed from the tyrany and slavery in Egypt.

Moses being a mighty man of God wanted to look upon God and see Him as He is. But God’s power is too great and so, God allowed Moses to see God from behind. Moses was able to see the glory of God, as The Holy One passed in front of him. Moses was forever changed by the presence of the Lord. Moses had to wear a veil around others, because his face shown bright with God’s glory. It was too much for them to look at. We desire to be in God’s presence. Sometimes I wonder if we really understand what it means to be in God’s presence. God’s presence is a holiness we cannot imagine. The result of Moses seeing God was a life change and a noticable change in his complexion.

When we are able to be in the presence of God, we will be changed and others will notice the change.

…‘Look, the LORD our God has shown us his glory and greatness, and we have heard his voice from the heart of the fire. Today we have seen that God can speak to us humans, and yet we live (Deuteronomy 5:24, NLT, 1996)!

Seeing the greatentness of God often times takes us to places we do not want to go. Like Moses, we may have to abandon everything we know and become subject to ridicule before we can truly know God in His fullness. Going through difficult circumstances draws us closer to God. It is in our despair we begin facing our own unholiness and are re-directed to celebrate and truly understand God’s holiness. His holiness is the only standard by which we are able to measure ourselves.

Charles Spurgeon (1964) wrote,

Thank God, then, if you have been led by a rough road: it is this which has given you your experience of God’s greatness and lovingkindness.

It is through our understanding of our own failings, we can truly understand what happened when Moses had seen the Lord. Notice the power that had to be released when God called out His own name, “Yahweh! The Lord! The God of compassion and mercy” (Exodus 34:6, NLT, 1996)! God’s statements in Exodus 34:6-7, shows us God’s power and righteousness, but it also strongly asserts His forgiving nature, yet asserts His measure of equality in punishing the wicked. His love and faithfulness surpasses sin, as He grants forgiveness, but God’s love and faithfulness also causes Him to be a just God and punish the wicked. His perfect nature causes Him to be fair and fairness dictates He cannot allow sin to continue.

6 The LORD passed in front of Moses, calling out, “Yahweh! The LORD! The God of compassion and mercy! I am slow to anger and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness. 7  I lavish unfailing love to a thousand generations. I forgive iniquity, rebellion, and sin. But I do not excuse the guilty. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children and grandchildren; the entire family is affected— even children in the third and fourth generations” (Exodus 34:6-7, NLT, 1996).

When we see God, we will be forever changed and will fully understand the wisdom and justice of God. Like Moses, I too desire to see God and know His presence fully. May we ever endure the hardships, which may come upon us and realize God is the strength who brings us through and let us begin to see God more clearly through our difficulties. May we one day stand before the Almighty and say, “I understand!”

Holy Bible: New Living Translation. (1996). Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House.
Spurgeon, C. H. (1964). Spurgeon’s Morning and Evening Devotions From the Bible.
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