You Will Never See My Face
“… ‘for I [God] will not go up in the midst of thee [the Israelites]; for thou art a stiff-necked people: lest I consume thee in the way’. … And he [Moses] said unto Him, ‘If Thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence.’” - Exodus 33:3,15
What is Moses saying here? He’s saying, “God, if You’re not going, I'm not going.” St. Augustine is attributed with asking this question: “If God were to come to you and say, ‘I’ll give you anything you want. Nothing will be withheld. You can have whatever you want with one exception: you will never see My face,’ would you take that proposition?” He then said, “If a chill went over your soul when you heard that phrase, ‘You will never see my face,’ thank God for that chill.”
God offered to send the Israelites along their way with the protection of an angel. He promised them victory in the Promised Land. But Moses said: “I don’t want Canaan without you. I don’t want an angel to guide us. I don’t want victory. I don’t want milk and honey. I want you, God.”
Is there anything today you want more than God’s presence? Think carefully. If so, then that thing—whatever or whomever it is—is an idol.
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Daybreak: Practicing the Presence of God
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