Original Entry Date 1/23/2016: This is one of my favorite portions of scripture because of God’s mysteriousness but at the same time, there is a familiarity that I sense in my heart and soul as I read it! It’s as though I don’t FULLY know/understand His mysterious ways but the familiarity I feel causes me to know that I do know. Can you relate? I know that it is His Holy Spirit inside of me that causes me to know Him in this sense.
The portion of scripture that we will go over today will be from Exodus. At this point in scripture, God was angry because the children of Israel had turned their hearts from Him and began worshipping the golden calf.
Moses went to God to ask that He would forgive the people of their sin, God refused and said those who sinned against Him would face the consequences.
God commanded Moses to continue onward, leading Israel to the Promised Land. God said He would send an Angel ahead to assist with taking the land but God, Himself, would not go any further due to His wrath. This greatly concerned Moses and that is where we will begin our reading.
Exodus 33:12-23 HCSB:12 Moses said to the Lord, “Look, You have told me, ‘Lead this people up,’ but You have not let me know whom You will send with me. You said, ‘I know you by name, and you have also found favor in My sight.’ 13 Now if I have indeed found favor in Your sight, please teach me Your ways, and I will know You and find favor in Your sight. Now consider that this nation is Your people.”
14 Then He replied, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”
15 “If Your presence does not go,” Moses responded to Him, “don’t make us go up from here. 16 How will it be known that I and Your people have found favor in Your sight unless You go with us? I and Your people will be distinguished by this from all the other people on the face of the earth.”
17 The Lord answered Moses, “I will do this very thing you have asked, for you have found favor in My sight, and I know you by name.”
18 Then Moses said, “Please, let me see Your glory.”
19 He said, “I will cause all My goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim the name Yahweh before you. I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.” 20 But He answered, “You cannot see My face, for no one can see Me and live.” 21 The Lord said, “Here is a place near Me. You are to stand on the rock, 22 and when My glory passes by, I will put you in the crevice of the rock and cover you with My hand until I have passed by. 23 Then I will take My hand away, and you will see My back, but My face will not be seen.”
Right there in those last 3 verses is an image of God’s protection over us when we “stand upon the rock.” We all know who the Rock is, the rock is a symbol of Christ Jesus, Amen! The Rock of Offense.
Isaiah 8:14 AMPC:14 And He shall be a sanctuary [a sacred and indestructible asylum to those who reverently fear and trust in Him]; but He shall be a Stone of stumbling and a Rock of offense to both the houses of Israel, a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
In verse 21 God tells Moses to come to the place that is near Him and “stand on the Rock.” This is a symbol of a person who lives their life by building their Faith upon the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Since we are building our lives upon the Rock He has become our firm foundation. Just as Jesus says in Matthew.
Matthew 7:24-25 HCSB24 “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them will be like a sensible man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house. Yet it didn’t collapse, because its foundation was on the rock.
We are protected because, as verse 22 states, God lifts those who stand on the Rock and places them inside the Rock, and covers the crevice with His hand.
He is our fortress of protection.
Psalm 18-2-3 HCSBThe Lord is my rock,
my fortress, and my deliverer,
my God, my mountain where I seek refuge,
my shield and the horn of my salvation,
3 I called to the Lord, who is worthy of praise,
and I was saved from my enemies.