Beginning of the End


Moses Sees the Crucifixion and the Earth Made New

He followed the Savior to Gethsemane and saw the agony in the garden, the betrayal, the mockery and scourging, the crucifixion. Moses saw that as he had lifted up the bronze serpent in the wilderness, so the Son of God must be lifted up, so “that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:15). Grief, indignation, and horror filled the heart of Moses as he viewed the hypocrisy and satanic hatred of the Jewish nation directed against their Redeemer. BOE 235.5

He heard Christ’s agonizing cry, “My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?” (Mark 15:34). He saw Him lying in Joseph’s new tomb. The darkness of hopeless despair seemed to enshroud the world, but he looked again and saw Him a conqueror going up to heaven, escorted by adoring angels and leading a large number of captives rescued from the grave. BOE 236.1

Moses watched the disciples of Jesus as they went out to carry His gospel to the world. Though Israel “according to the flesh” had failed to be the light of the world, though they had forfeited their blessings as His chosen people, yet God had not cast off the children of Abraham. All who through Christ would become the children of faith were to be counted as Abraham’s descendants, inheritors of the covenant promises. Like Abraham they were called to make known to the world the law of God and the gospel of His Son. Moses saw the light of the gospel shining through the disciples of Jesus, and thousands of people from the lands of the Gentiles accepting the faith. He rejoiced in the increase and prosperity of Israel. BOE 236.2

And now another scene passed before him. He had been shown how Satan would lead the Jews to reject Christ while they professed to honor His Father’s law. He now saw the world under a similar deception, claiming to accept Christ while rejecting God’s law. He had heard from the priests and elders the frenzied cry, “Away with Him!” “Crucify Him, crucify Him!” And now he heard from professedly Christian teachers the cry, “Away with the law!” BOE 236.3

He saw the Sabbath trampled under foot and a substitute day of worship established in its place. Moses was filled with astonishment and horror. How could those who believed in Christ set aside the law that is the foundation of His government in heaven and earth? With joy Moses saw the law of God still honored and exalted by a faithful few. He saw the last great struggle of earthly powers to destroy those who keep God’s law. He heard God’s covenant of peace with those who have kept His law, as He speaks from His holy dwelling place. He saw the second coming of Christ in glory, the righteous dead raised to immortal life, and the living saints translated without seeing death and together going up to the City of God with songs of gladness. BOE 236.4

Still another scene opens to his view—the earth freed from the curse, lovelier than the fair Land of Promise so recently spread out before him. No sin is there, and death cannot enter. With unspeakable joy, Moses looks on the scene, a more glorious deliverance than his brightest hopes have ever pictured. With their earthly wanderings forever past, the Israel of God have at last entered the beautiful land. BOE 236.5

Again the vision faded, and his eyes rested on the land of Canaan in the distance. Then, like a tired warrior, he lay down to rest. “So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord. And He buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth Peor; but no one knows his grave.” If they had known the place of his burial, many would have been in danger of committing idolatry over his dead body. For this reason the site was kept secret. Angels of God buried the body of His faithful servant and watched over the lonely grave. BOE 237.1

But he was not to remain in the tomb for very long. Christ Himself, with the angels who had buried Moses, came down from heaven to call the sleeping saint out of his grave. Satan had rejoiced at his success in causing Moses to sin and thus come under the dominion of death. The great adversary declared that the divine sentence, “Dust you are, and to dust you shall return” (Genesis 3:19), gave him possession of the dead. The power of the grave had never been broken, and he claimed all who were in the tomb as his captives, never to be released. BOE 237.2

As the Prince of life and the shining ones approached the grave, Satan was alarmed for his authority. He stood to dispute an invasion of the territory that he claimed as his own. He declared that even Moses was not able to keep the law of God. He had taken to himself the glory due to Jehovah, the very sin that had caused Satan to be banished from heaven, and by sin he had come under the dominion of Satan. The chief traitor repeated the original charges he had made—that God was unfair toward him. BOE 237.3

Christ could have reminded him of the cruel work that his deceptions had brought about in heaven, causing the ruin of a vast number of its inhabitants. He could have pointed to the lies told in Eden that had led to Adam’s sin and brought death on the human race. He might have reminded Satan that it was his own work in tempting Israel to complain and rebel that had worn down the longsuffering patience of their leader and in an unguarded moment had surprised him into the sin for which he had fallen under death. But Christ referred all to His Father, saying, “The Lord rebuke you!” (Jude 9). The Savior did not argue or debate with His enemy, but then and there began His work of breaking Satan’s power and bringing the dead to life. Here was evidence of Jesus’ supremacy. Satan was deprived of his victim—the righteous dead would live again. Moses came out from the tomb glorified, and he ascended with his Deliverer to the City of God. BOE 237.4

God shut Moses out of Canaan to teach a lesson that we should never forget—that He requires exact obedience and that all should beware of taking to themselves the glory due their Maker. He could not grant the prayer of Moses that he share the inheritance of Israel, but He did not forget or forsake His servant. On the top of Mt. Pisgah, God called Moses to an inheritance infinitely more glorious than the earthly Canaan. BOE 237.5

On the mount of transfiguration Moses was present with Elijah, who had been translated. And so the prayer of Moses was at last fulfilled. He stood on “the pleasant mountain,” within the heritage of his people, bearing witness to Him in whom all the promises to Israel centered. This is the last scene revealed to mortal vision in the history of that man so highly honored by Heaven. BOE 238.1