Rabbi’s Reflections – Saturday, May 27, 2023
Day 36: Morning
His Glory Begins with His Compassion and Grace
by David Harwood
What a crisis in Israel and God’s relationship! Would it survive? After all, Israel had so grievously sinned that the Lord was quite angry. They had brazenly committed spiritual adultery when they worshiped the golden calf.
Would God destroy them and make a new nation out of Moses? He said He would.
Now therefore, leave Me alone, so My wrath may burn hot against them, and so I may consume them—and make from you a great nation! (Exodus 32:10 TLV)
But Moses interceded with this result:
So Adonai relented from the destruction that He said He would do to His people. (Exodus 32:14 T:V)
Relenting from that, would God’s presence accompany Israel? Moses and God had another intense interaction, and Moses’ intercession overcame the alienation.
For how would it be known that I or your people have found favor in Your sight? Isn’t it because You go with us, that distinguishes us from all the people on the face of the earth?”
Adonai answered Moses, “I will also do what you have said, for you have found favor in My sight, and I know you by name.” (Exodus 33:16-17 TLV)
Yes, God would accompany Israel. His presence would be there to bring His people into their inheritance. This is not enough for Moses. He wanted more than this. Upon the basis of this assurance, Moses pressed in.
Then he said, “Please, show me Your glory!” (Exodus 33:18 TLV)
This took place in the tent of meeting (Exodus 33:7). Here’s a word of encouragement: the pillar of cloud would descend and the Lord would speak to Moses when Moses went to the tent. God responds.
His presence would be available. They would converse face to face. Moses’ prayer shows that he wanted to know the Person behind the Presence—the Person within the promises.
It’s as if Moses was saying, “What are You really like? Show me Your glory!”
The Delivering God Who said that He’d go with Israel began to reveal the truth about His goodness. This goodness would be manifest in His relationship to His people. It turned out that God would be good to Israel.
I will be gracious toward whom I will be gracious, and I will show mercy on whom I will be merciful.” (Exodus 33:19b TLV)
Yahweh began calling out to Yahweh. Here is the beginning of His proclamation:
God, who is compassionate and gracious… (Exodus 34:6b LEB)
This is what God considered the beginning of His glory. My perspective is that if God were omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent, but not good, He would not be glorious. It would be a nightmare.
Note, the Lord did not say to Moses, “Look how BIG I am. Look how I know about everything! I AM powerful! More powerful than you can imagine. That is My glory!”
No. His glory begins with His compassion and grace. The identical glory we see fleshed out in the Messiah was being revealed in words. This glory would be demonstrated throughout His interaction with Israel. By the way, He is not finished yet. The full manifestation of God’s compassion and grace toward the Jewish people is a major emphasis of Paul’s expectation of the end-time revelation of God’s glory. Please read:
Now if their transgression leads to riches for the world, and their loss riches for the Gentiles, then how much more their fullness! (Romans 11:12)
For if their rejection leads to the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead? (Romans 11:15)
For I do not want you, brothers and sisters, to be ignorant of this mystery—lest you be wise in your own eyes—that a partial hardening has come upon Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in; and in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written, “The Deliverer shall come out of Zion. He shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob. (Romans 11:25-26)
Concerning the Good News, they are hostile for your sake; but concerning chosenness, they are loved on account of the fathers— for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. (Romans 11:28-29)
He will be gracious to whom He wills to be gracious. God’s goodness is the demonstration of His glory.
Show me Your glory. I want to love You more in fellowship with You.
Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarsson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Day 49 of the Omer
Sat 27 May-2023 7th of Sivan, 5783
De 16:9-17, Nu 28:26-31 Hab 2:20-3:19(3:1-19) 2 Co 3