“Moshe said to Aharon, “Say to the whole community of Israel, ‘Come close, into the presence of Adonai, for he has heard your grumblings.’” As Aharon spoke to the whole community of the people of Israel, they looked toward the desert; and there before them the glory of Adonai appeared in the cloud.”-Exodus 16:9-10
You know, it just occurred to me if there is any one book in the Bible a new believer should really study hard and internalize, it’s gotta be the Book of Exodus.
It’s like a powerful Warrior’s Manual for the new believer!
I mean point-by-point we’re given the dos and don’ts about how to walk in a way pleasing to the Lord as well as how to deal with a variety of situations a new believer will face immediately after being saved.
And today’s lesson is no exception.
Moses tells the whole community to come near and approach the “glory of God”.
The original Hebrew here is KEVOD YAHWEH.
Now is this KEVOD YAHWEH, which manifested as a cloud, some new divine experience for Israel?
It was the same presence of God that had been with them all along leading and protecting them.
Every day and all day ever since leaving Egypt, the presence of God in a visible form had always been available to the people of Israel.
So why did Moses have to go out of his way to tell the community to stop what they were doing, pay attention and approach God’s presence?
The answer is simple.
While God’s presence may be available to us, we have to make the choice to approach Him.
There is a difference between “having access to God’s presence” and “actually accessing God’s presence”.
It’s kind of like buying a self-development book that contains great information on how to build a six-pack ripped body but you never do anything with it.
Sure you have access to the information, but if you don’t make use of the information via actual implementation, ain’t nothing gonna happen folks.
Why had the Israelites become discouraged?
Either one of two reasons.
They had taken their eyes off of the cloud of God’s Glory.
they did not fully understand or recognize that the cloud WAS the presence of God.
When preachers tell us to keep our focus on Yeshua who is our present KEVOD YHVH, they are right.
Amidst a world containing so many tantalizing distractions, it can be so easy to get side-tracked.
When this happens, the presence of God becomes just one attraction among many in our lives.
And then He finally becomes unnoticed in our lives.
The Glory of God had never left Israel.
They had just failed to keep looking up to and focusing on it.
CONNECTING THIS TEACHING TO THE NEW TESTAMENT
“Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses,
let us throw off everything that hinders
and the sin that so easily entangles.
And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,
fixing our eyes on Yeshua, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.”