Monday, January 11, 2010

God Revealed

Have you ever wished the God would show himself to you? It seems like it might be easier to believe and follow Him if we could see Him. We look for signs of God or His work to help us get a grasp of who He is. When I was just reading about God revealing his glory to Moses, I saw for the first time that He’s already done that.

Not long after Moses and the Israelites left Egypt and crossed the Red Sea, the people sinned. While Moses was on a mountain getting instructions from God, Aaron helped the people make a golden calf to worship. This was strictly against the rules. God alone was to be their God. Now, I know I sin a lot and grumble against God a lot. But I think maybe if it was still in recent memory the things God did to get us out of Egypt I might have lasted at least a few months. Or would I?

When God sees what they have done he gets angry. He tells them they can still go to the land He promised but His presence will not go with them. I love this part.

“Go up to the land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you, because you are a stiff-necked people and I might destroy you along the way.”

Exodus 33:3

It’s really parent-like when He says you can go ahead and go, but I’m not going because I am so angry I might smite you on the way. Moses pleaded with God to stay with them. And God listens to Moses.

Then Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. how will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?

And the Lord said, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”

Exodus 33:15-17

Then the Lord tells Moses that he will cause all his goodness to pass by and proclaim His name, but He will cover Moses with his hand so he can’t see his face. When the Lord passes by and reveals His glory and goodness to Moses this is what happens. The Lord came down in a cloud and stood there with Moses and proclaimed his name, the Lord.

And He passed in front of Moses proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation.”

Exodus 34:6-8

After that Moses bowed down and worshipped. When God revealed His name, he showed his character: compassion, grace, loving, faithful, forgiving, just. Those are the very things that are revealed about Him in the Bible. HE is shown through His Word. Who He is, is His glory and goodness and that’s all we need to worship Him.

He continued to show all the goodness of His character to the Israelites every time they sinned. Over and over again. And He does the same for us. Our response should be reverence, obedience and worship.

God can reveal things to us in our hearts and still does. But sometimes, I’m tempted to keep looking for God. I need more. I need something exciting, maybe an easier way or a more charismatic leader. I need something visual. The thing is I don’t have to keep looking. It’s all there. He’s the same Lord that revealed Himself to Moses. He’s the same yesterday, today and forever.

The only looking I need to do is looking forward to the day when we’ll all see His glory and be able to be with Him forever. The Lord, the lord, the compassionate and gracious God!

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