Time on the Mountain


I love the story of Moses. I love how God took a weak, sinful man and used him for such great and mighty purposes. Throughout the life of Moses we see him having intense, personal encounters with God (the burning bush ring any bells?), and these encounters change him. They make him compassionate, long-suffering, wise, and of course, shiny. 

In Exodus we are told in great detail about Moses' encounter with God on Mt. Siani. Moses goes up the mountain and enters into the glory of the Lord. He is given tablets written by the hand of God himself. And Moses is changed. In chapter 34, we are told that when Moses comes down from the mountain his skin is glowing because of his encounter with God. Moses' countenance was so altered that Aaron and the people wouldn't even come near him at first. They were scared to even be in the presence of someone so changed by God. 

The law  given to Moses on Mt. Siani had no power to save the people. It offered no hope of redemption, and yet, receiving it filled Moses with such glory that the people were afraid to look upon his face. 

In 2 Corinthians, Paul tells us that the glory we have in the Spirit far exceeds the glory that was conveyed to Moses through the giving of the law. 
"Now if the ministry of death, carved in letters on stone came with such glory that the Isrealites could not gaze at Moses' face because of its glory, which was being brought to an end, will no the ministry of the Spirit have even more glory? For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, the ministry of righteousness must far exceed it in glory." 2 Corinthians 3:7-9
You and I have an even greater promise than the one given to Moses. We have a new covenant, established by the blood of Jesus and sealed with his Spirit in our lives. This promise gives us hope, redemption and salvation. How much greater is its glory!

We don't even have to climb a mountain to behold the glory of the Lord (and praise God for that!). His glory is living in us! We see it in the working of the Spirit in our lives. We behold his promises and his grace in the Word given to us by the inspiration of God. And it should transform us!
"And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit." 2 Corinthians 3:18
My favorite part of the story of Moses is that he is completely unaware of the change in his countenance. In Exodus 34:29 we are told that Moses had no idea his skin was glowing from the glory of the Lord. He was so focused on God, he had no time to contemplate his own reflection. His time on the mountain wasn't about him; it was about God. 

The more I study this account of Moses life, the more I find myself wanting to be changed like he was. I want to spend so much time with the Lord that my whole outlook on life changes. I want my desires to be in line with His. I want my thoughts and actions to be centered in His will. I want to spend time on the mountain, studying the Word of the Lord, worshiping his greatness. I want to be glowing. 

And I want others to notice, not for my benefit, but for theirs.
"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven." Matthew 5:16

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