Moses had a problem: the Lord, due to the golden calf incident, refused to go with the Israelites into the Promised Land. This called for immediate and intense intercession on behalf of the sinful people. Despite of his own effort in atoning for the people by asking God to remove his name from the Book of Life, God was not moved. Later, Moses changed his strategy by drawing near to God and hearing His heart. He talked with God face to face, like man speaking to a friend. He approached God not with a request but in worship and intimacy. That touched God’s heart.
After spending time in worship and holy chatting, Moses then placed a very interesting request to the Lord: that God would show him His ways so that he might know God more. The Lord was pleased with this request and gave the promise that He would go with the Israelites and would give him rest. The reason was that Moses had found favor in God’s eyes and He knew Moses by his name.
The second bold request by Moses was to see God’s glory. God’s glory is the manifest presence of God. No one can see God and live but we may see the glory of God. The Lord then revealed His name to Moses and passed by him as Moses stood on a rock with his faced covered by the hand of the Lord. Moses could only see His back and not His face.
Both requests moved God’s heart, He wants His people to know Him more and have a hunger to go before Him and see His glory. Most of us want to get something from the Lord as we approach Him in a self-centered encounter. Only the encounters that focus on God and His presence please God. Many have tried to twist God’s arms by offering God their plans. Some would ask God to take away the length of their days in exchange for the healing of a dying loved one. Others promise God with a large donation should God bless them with good financial gain.
The Psalmist relates this kind of God-man encounter in three parts: to leave the world and go up to God’s holy mountain; to stand in the house of God and worship; and to seek God’s face. We have to ascend, to stand and to see. These efforts please the Lord and He would grace us with his presence and glory. Before doing that, we have to take care of our sin problems by removing what is false in our heart and what is deceitful in our tongues. With a clean hand and pure heart, we shall see God.
Do you have the hunger for God and His presence? Are there any sins in your life you need to confess before you may ascend to, stand in and behold His glory? Are your prayers often self-centered and not God-centered?
Ps 24:1-6 Exo 32:1-33:23 Matt 26:69-27:14 Prov 8:33-36