Moses had experienced the presence of God as manifested in the plagues that beset the Egyptians before the Children of Israel were allowed to leave Egypt. He had seen the pillar of fire at night and the cloud during the day while he led the Israelites through the wilderness toward the Promised Land. He had great faith in the ability of God to take care of His children. And yet, because of his relationship with Jehovah, Moses asked for an even more intimate experience: He wanted to see, firsthand, the glory of God.
Moses is the only man in the Bible to have made such a simple, yet dynamic request, and with it, he stood head and shoulders above all other Bible characters. It was surely the sincere longing behind the petition that touched the heart of God and moved His hand to grant the desire of Moses’ heart. He had favor with God, and the Creator of the universe responded. How did Moses feel after He had made such a bold appeal? Did he tremble at the audacity of his entreaty? Did he quake in his sandals? Did the hair on the back of his neck stand up at such boldness?
Moses had a sustained track record of favor with God. He knew Jehovah to be faithful. He had seen His glory in the burning bush, in the fire and cloud, in the parting of the waters of the Red Sea, in the salvation of an entire people during the solemn Passover. Moses was sustained by both faith and favor; he knew his God.
Moses’ favor with God had been earned in the fire of adversity and the cloud of spiritual union. He need not fear a close encounter with Jehovah; he knew that he had purified himself and was prepared for the meeting. Moses refused to allow fear to rob him of stepping into the very presence of Jehovah. As the Apostle Paul wrote in I John 4:18: “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment.”
“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment.”
—I John 4:18
In Exodus 33:13, Moses petitions God to “show me now Your way, that I may know You.” He wanted to know the way of God, before he requested to see the glory of God. He established a bond before he sought a glimpse of the Almighty. Moses was not a beggar who had to grovel at the back door of the throne room, seeking but not expecting an audience with the Lord of the manor. No, he was a son who had access to the front entrance, an open door because he had favor with God.
A place by God, covered by His hand—cherished, protected, blessed, and highly favored! Moses saw, not the God of judgment, not the all-consuming fire; he basked in the presence of a God who loved the man He had chosen to lead His people, the one upon whom rested favor with God. This is the favor God wants you to experience in your life.