From Eternity Past


Moses Sees God's Glory

The gracious words were spoken, “I will make all My goodness pass before thee.” Moses was summoned to the mountain summit; then the hand that made the world, that hand that “removeth the mountains, and they know not” (Job 9:5), took this creature of the dust and placed him in a cleft of the rock, while the glory of God and all His goodness passed before him. EP 228.4

This experience was to Moses an assurance which he counted of infinitely greater worth than all the learning of Egypt or all his attainments as a statesman or military leader. No earthly power or skill of learning can supply the place of God's abiding presence. EP 228.5

Moses stood alone in the presence of the Eternal One, and he was not afraid, for his soul was in harmony with his Maker. “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.” Psalm 66:18. But “the secret of the Lord is with them that fear Him; and He will show them His covenant.” Psalm 25:14. EP 229.1

The Deity proclaimed Himself, “The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty.” EP 229.2

“Moses made haste, and bowed his head toward the earth, and worshiped.” The Lord graciously promised to renew His favor to Israel and to do marvels such as had not been done “in all the earth, nor in any nation.” During all this time, as at the first, Moses was miraculously sustained. At God's command he had prepared two tables of stone and had taken them with him to the summit; and again the Lord “wrote upon the tables the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.” (See Appendix, Note 4.) EP 229.3

Moses’ face shone with a dazzling light when he descended from the mountain. Aaron as well as the people “were afraid to come nigh him.” Seeing their terror, he held out to them the pledge of God's reconciliation. They perceived in his voice nothing but love and entreaty, and at last one ventured to approach him. Too awed to speak, he silently pointed to the countenance of Moses and then toward heaven. The great leader understood his meaning. In their conscious guilt, they could not endure the heavenly light which, had they been obedient to God, would have filled them with joy. EP 229.4

Moses put a veil upon his face and continued to do so thereafter whenever he returned to the camp from communion with God. EP 229.5

By this brightness, God designed to impress upon Israel the exalted character of His law and the glory of the gospel revealed through Christ. While Moses was in the mount, God presented to him not only the tables of the law, but also the plan of salvation. He saw the sacrifice of Christ prefigured by all the types and symbols of the Jewish age; and it was the heavenly light streaming from Calvary, no less than the glory of the law of God, that shed such radiance upon the face of Moses. EP 230.1

The glory reflected in the countenance of Moses testifies that the closer our communion with God and the clearer our knowledge of His requirements, the more fully shall we be conformed to the divine image. EP 230.2

As Israel's intercessor veiled his countenance, so Christ, the divine Mediator, veiled His divinity with humanity when He came to earth. Had He come clothed with the brightness of heaven, men in their sinful state could not have endured the glory of His presence. Therefore He humbled Himself, and was made “in the likeness of sinful flesh” (Romans 8:3), that He might reach the fallen race and lift them up. EP 230.3