The Eternal Moses

The Scriptures tell us that Moses went up to the Mountain of the Lord to meet with God, and that twice God gave him the Ten Commandments. We want to look at the second time, the time after the people fashioned the Golden Calf.  Exodus 34:1-3 tells us this, The Lord said to Moses, “Chisel out two stone tablets like the first ones, and I will write on them the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke.  Be ready in the morning, and then come up on Mount Sinai. Present yourself to Me there on top of the mountain.  No one is to come with you or be seen anywhere on the mountain; not even the flocks and herds may graze in front of the mountain.”

But we want to take a step back and quickly look at the verses that come before this, it was here that God told Moses that His Presence would go with the people. It is right after this that Moses said in Exodus 33:18-23,  “Then Moses said, “Now show me Your glory.” And the Lord said, “I will cause all My goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim My name, the Lord, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.  But,” He said, “you cannot see my face, for no one may see Me and live.”  Then the Lord said, “There is a place near Me where you may stand on a rock.  When My glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with My hand until I have passed by.  Then I will remove My hand and you will see My back; but My face must not be seen.”

But God did not show Moses His glory until he came back up to the mountain a second time. Why the second time? Because Moses had to go back down to deal with the people who had just broken faith with God by worshiping the Golden Calf, but was that the only reason?

Exodus 34:4-7 continues,  “So Moses chiseled out two stone tablets like the first ones and went up Mount Sinai early in the morning, as the Lord had commanded him; and he carried the two stone tablets in his hands.  Then the Lord came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed His name, the Lord.  And He passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness,  maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet He does not leave the guilty unpunished; He punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.”

We can see from this Scripture that God revealed more than only His glory to Moses, He also revealed to Moses that He was a forgiving God. This chapter goes on to speak about the commandments of  God’s Appointed Times and other topics until Exodus 34:28-35 which is what we want to take a closer look at. “Moses was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights without eating bread or drinking water. And He wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Commandments. When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the covenant law in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the Lord.  When Aaron and all the Israelites saw Moses, his face was radiant, and they were afraid to come near him.  But Moses called to them; so Aaron and all the leaders of the community came back to him, and he spoke to them.  Afterward all the Israelites came near him, and he gave them all the commands the Lord had given him on Mount Sinai. When Moses finished speaking to them, he put a veil over his face.  But whenever he entered the Lord’s presence to speak with Him, he removed the veil until he came out. And when he came out and told the Israelites what he had been commanded,  they saw that his face was radiant. Then Moses would put the veil back over his face until he went in to speak with the Lord.”

The reason the people fashioned the Golden Calf was because Moses was up on the mountain for forty days and forty nights. They thought he was dead, because no one could go that long without food or water. We want to look again at this episode when Moses was recapping the Israelites journey before he died in Deuteronomy 9:7-18.

“Remember this and never forget how you aroused the anger of the Lord your God in the wilderness. From the day you left Egypt until you arrived here, you have been rebellious against the Lord.  At Horeb you aroused the Lord’s wrath so that He was angry enough to destroy you. When I went up on the mountain to receive the tablets of stone, the tablets of the covenant that the Lord had made with you, I stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights; I ate no bread and drank no water.  The Lord gave me two stone tablets inscribed by the finger of God. On them were all the commandments the Lord proclaimed to you on the mountain out of the fire, on the day of the assembly.  At the end of the forty days and forty nights, the Lord gave me the two stone tablets, the tablets of the covenant. Then the Lord told me, “Go down from here at once, because your people whom you brought out of Egypt have become corrupt. They have turned away quickly from what I commanded them and have made an idol for themselves.” And the Lord said to me, “I have seen this people, and they are a stiff-necked people indeed! Let me alone, so that I may destroy them and blot out their name from under heaven. And I will make you into a nation stronger and more numerous than they.”  So I turned and went down from the mountain while it was ablaze with fire. And the two tablets of the covenant were in my hands.  When I looked, I saw that you had sinned against the Lord your God; you had made for yourselves an idol cast in the shape of a calf. You had turned aside quickly from the way that the Lord had commanded you.  So I took the two tablets and threw them out of my hands, breaking them to pieces before your eyes. Then once again I fell prostrate before the Lord for forty days and forty nights; I ate no bread and drank no water, because of all the sin you had committed, doing what was evil in the Lord’s sight and so arousing His anger.”

Chapter 10:1, 10 says this, “At that time the Lord said to me, “Chisel out two stone tablets like the first ones and come up to me on the mountain. Also make a wooden ark.” Now I had stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights, as I did the first time, and the Lord listened to me at this time also. It was not His will to destroy you.”

So what is the point of this? This shows that twice Moses was with the Lord forty days and forty nights. This means he went 80 days and 80 nights without eating.  Yes, he came down the mountain, only to go back up in the morning, but you must consider that Moses would not have eaten or drank because he was going back up to God’s presence. No food, no water for 80 days and nights, and Moses saw the glory of the Lord, this can only mean one thing. In God’s presence there is no time, there is no need for food or water. For that moment, Moses was eternal. Moses’ face  shone like the light of God’s glory. This was so with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. They were created to be eternal beings like God, even though they had a body. They had the pleasure of the garden, not the need of it. They were eternal. They shined greater than the sun, so much so, that they did not know that they were naked.  It was only after they sinned that they became subject to death as Romans 5:12 tells us, “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned.” Also, the glory of the Lord left them, and all they could see was their nakedness, and they had a need for food that now Adam had to work the ground to grow it. The following is what life will be once again in the restored Garden of Eden, during the Messianic Age and even unto the hereafter. Revelation 22:1-5 speaks of the restored Eden. “Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb  down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.  No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and His servants will serve Him.  They will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads.  There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.”

Moses had a little taste of eternity on the mountain, and we find him again on a mountain where we see  in Matthew 17:1-3, when he appeared with Elijah and our Messiah in all His glory. “Six days later, Yeshua took with Him Peter and James, and his brother John, and led them up on a high mountain by themselves.  And He was transfigured before them; and His face shone like the sun, and His garments became as white as light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him.”

So you have to ask yourself, “Why did Moses hide his face, you would think that he would have wanted all the people to see a little part of eternity?” Moses was a very humble man, and he would not in any way show himself to be above anyone. He knew that it was better to hide his face, then for him to exalt himself, even for a brief moment.

Philippians 2:3-7 tells us,  “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility consider one another as more important than yourselves;  do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.  Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Messiah Yeshua, who, as He already existed in the form of God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,  but emptied Himself by taking the form of a bond-servant and being born in the likeness of men.”

2 Corinthians 4:3- 7 says this, “If the Good News we preach is hidden to anyone, it is hidden from the one who is on the road to eternal death.  Satan, who is the god of this evil world, has made him blind, unable to see the glorious light of the Gospel that is shining upon him or to understand the amazing message we preach about the glory of  Messiah, who is God. We don’t go around preaching about ourselves but about Messiah Yeshua as Lord. All we say of ourselves is that we are your slaves because of what Yeshua has done for us.  For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made us understand that it is the brightness of His glory that is seen in the face of Messiah Yeshua. But this precious treasure—this light and power that now shines within us is held in a perishable container, that is, in our weak bodies. Everyone can see that the glorious power within must be from God and is not our own.”

God’s Word is Light, and when we live by that Light, we also are light, and we are suppose to let our light shine before men, Matthew 5:14-16. Moses received God’s Torah and he saw His glory, and for a moment, experienced eternity. Now we can also do the same, for God has put eternity in our hearts, Ecclesiastes 3:11.

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