There is so much detail to God. He is a God of order and will tell us exactly how He wants us to go if we will listen. In every detail of the temple, of the priests garments, of the anointing oil, of the types of offerings, right down to the reason why, God provides a way for His people to access a holy God.
What lingers with me this week are several points about Moses and his amazing God: how God listened to Moses, and He knew him by name, and He was pleased with him. As we read through this week, God reveals Who He is many times to us. I fall in love with Him more each day as I read about His unfathomable, beautiful nature.
“so they will know that I am their God who brought them out of Egypt so that I might dwell among them.(29:46)
(34:6,7) As He passes before Moses, He reveals His Name and His Nature. 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.”
Oh I just realized I could write forever this week on these Scriptures, so I am going to write a couple more random thoughts and call it a post. Sorry for the lack of theme and coherent thought, but it is all so beautiful to me, and His love and holiness are woven into each passage.
Random #1 I love that in Ex. 30:30, God had special incense that He commanded the Israelites to make. Because the incense represented the prayers, it was never to be used except unto Him. He loves a fragrant aroma because He loves our prayers. To each of our senses, He gives delight and takes delight. What we smell, what we see what we hear, what we touch, what we taste. He is attentive to each detail. He delights our senses.
Random #2 (Ex. 31:17) Observing the Sabbath was a sign between God and Israel forever. He gives us a tradition and a reason why: that we alone know who loves us and makes us holy. Traditions make strong bonds. They unite and remind, make holy and festive, and often are somber and sacred. We have abandoned so many traditions for fear of being rote in the church and I miss them. There is a holiness of a sacred altar and vessels to serve in His House. I remember once having altar guild duty as a novice and noticing the candle that was always to burn constantly in the sanctuary was about to go out, so I got a new candle and tried to light the new one from the old as I had been instructed. I accidentally snuffed out the candle as I was trying to light the new one. For a moment, the candle went out, and I was horrified. If I had been one of Aaron’s priests, I imagine the bell on the hem of my garment would have gone silent. To this day, I am thankful for the Blood of Christ that covers all my sin, especially one committed in His House. I have no doubt I have committed countless sins in church, but in light of this side of the Cross and Grace, how glad I am that I was not snuffed out with that candle. Holiness demands our careful attention.
Big Point #3 and a Closing Prayer. When Moses, in his forlorn state for the sinful Israelites, says if You don’t go with us, even with providing every provision—if You are not there, don’t even send us. We can have everything we want, but if we don’t have God’s presence, it is all worthless.
Right on the heels of this conversation, Moses begs God to see Him. “Show me Your glory.” In fine array, we continue to see God’s glory, too, as He sets up His dwelling place and the types of offerings that please Him so that He could fellowship with the people of Israel. This week, I am so taken with His glory that is revealed on these pages. His holiness demands our worship. His glory demands our attention. May we bow low in reverent worship, with never a stiff neck, as we begin to realize just Who our Mighty God is.
Oh for the eyes to see His Glory, too, for now as Moses saw Him, hidden in clefts of rocks, dimly as in a mirror. But one day, we shall behold Him, face to Face.
If you want to read more about the beautiful aspects that linger from our readings this week, with the rest of the Cover to Cover bunch, visit Bev’s great post here. Thanks to all of you who are participating. The journey is more rewarding with friends along the way.