“And the Lord said to Moses, “This very thing that you have spoken I will do, for you have found favor in my sight, and I know you by name.” Moses said, “Please show me your glory.” – Exodus 33:17-18.
This prayer of Moses is one of the greatest prayers in the Bible. Just five words, “please show me your glory.” It is a simple prayer, and like Moses, who amongst us does not yearn for God to show us more of His glory. But hadn’t Moses already seen all that? Up to this point, he had experienced supernatural physical manifestations of God’s presence in the miracles in Egypt, the burning bush, the pillar of cloud and fire in the wilderness, the thick smoke-filled cloud on Mount Sinai. He had engaged in intimate conversations with God in the Holy of Holies.
Yes, he had experienced all those things but apparently Moses wanted more. The intimate relationship Moses had with God gave him the courage to ask. And as much as God probably wanted to grant Moses what he asked, He couldn’t. His brilliance, His radiance is too much for human eyes. But our loving God found a way to give Moses a taste of what he asked. He hid Moses in the cleft of a rock, covered his face with His hand, and allowed Moses a glimpse of His glory.
What’s so remarkable is God intended for us to experience that same glory in our midst. So when the time was right, God sent His glory to earth in the form of His Son, Jesus. Jesus’ very name, Immanuel, means “God with us.” What God has given us is truly extraordinary.
Too often today our thoughts of God are puny, limited, finite, and so unworthy of God. We have made God compatible with our image of Him. But God is not like anything we’ve ever experienced or anyone we’ve ever known. We need to go to the Word of God and shape our view and our opinion of God based on what He has revealed to be true of Himself. Scripture enables us see Him, behold, ponder and meditate on Him.
We know that if we saw more than that, the sight would kill us. God’s glory is so weighty, so impressive, His beauty, His majesty, His splendor—it’s so resplendent that we can’t look upon it in full view. But He gives us glimpses of His glory. And when He does, what He shows us is who He is, His character, His acts, what He’s like. Isaiah 6:2-3 says, “Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. They were calling out to each other, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies! The whole earth is filled with his glory!”
I pray that we will want to see God for who He is. That we will see His face and His glory. That we will hunger for more of His presence: Lord, show us your glory in 2021.
- Do you believe you have seen the glory of God? If not, why not?
- Can God show His glory to us today? Why or why not?
- What steps can we take to get closer to God in 2021?