Passages #5

I am doing a series on some of my favorite Bible passages. Here’s one:

Exodus 33:12 Moses said to the LORD, “You have been telling me, ‘Lead these people,’ but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. You have said, ‘I know you by name and you have found favor with me.’ 13 If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people.” 14 The LORD replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” 15 Then Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. 16 How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?”

I love this!

First, Moses is honest with God. He’s not all fake smiles; he’s like, “God, you’re not giving me what I need.” I think the great one’s are those who wrestle with God.

Second, Moses makes a great request. Compare your recent prayers with, “If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you.” That’s a prayer I want to pray.

Third, God gives an even better response. Moses asks God to teach him His ways, which would be cool, but God offers more: “My presence will go with you.” If someone teaches me something I might forget it, but if someone is WITH me, they’re a constant resource.

Fourth, Moses realizes what’s most important. He’s like, “That’s what I want, your presence! We’d rather live in the desert with you than in the promised land without you! How would people know you’re pleased with us if you’re not with us?”

So let me ask you: Is your greatest desire to have God with you? What about for your church? Would you rather have a small church with God’s presence, or a big church without God? And we all know that you CAN have a big church without God’s presence, right? So be honest, what is your greatest desire?