The Lord Promises to be With His People

Years ago, Frank Lloyd Wright was given the impossible task of building the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo. No comparable construction job ever before had been undertaken. With patience he laid plans for the immense building in this land of earthquakes and terrible tremors. After carefu … More


This passage can be divided into three sections with each introduced by the words “Moses said:”

  1. Moses said he wanted God’s presence to be with them as they journeyed toward the promised land (vv. 12-13). In response, God reversed his threat and promised to go with them and give them rest (v. 14).
  2. Moses said he wanted a confirmation that God would indeed go with them (vv. 15-16). Again the Lord agrees to Moses’ request and assures him that he is pleased with him (v. 17).
  3. Moses said I want to see the glory of God (v. 18). This request was fulfilled as God allowed Moses to witness His coming down visibly before him in the form of a man (vv. 19-23).

Several valuable lessons can be gained from this:

  1. We are unable to discover “God’s ways” for ourselves.
  2. God Himself can “show” us “His way.”
  3. It is only as God condescends to show us “His way” that we can really get to know Him.
  4. God does listen to our prayers and answers them according to His will.


Just as with Moses, the Lord frequently has to test us to see where and in whom our real confidence lies. I don’t necessarily like to be tested but know it is for my good and God’s glory!

Exodus 33:12-23 (English Standard Version)

Moses said to the LORD, "See, you say to me, 'Bring up this people,' but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. Yet you have said, 'I know you by name, and you have also found favor in my sight.' Now therefore, if I have found favor in your sight, please show me now your ways, that I may know you in order to find favor in your sight. Consider too that this nation is your people." And he said, "My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest." And he said to him, "If your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here. For how shall it be known that I have found favor in your sight, I and your people? Is it not in your going with us, so that we are distinct, I and your people, from every other people on the face of the earth?" 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." And he said, "I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name 'The LORD.' And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy. But," he said, "you cannot see my face, for man shall not see me and live." And the LORD said, "Behold, there is a place by me where you shall stand on the rock, and while my glory passes by I will put you in a cleft of the rock, and I will cover you with my hand until I have passed by. Then I will take away my hand, and you shall see my back, but my face shall not be seen."

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