In the Old Testament Moses was chosen as the most highly favored man who would talk with Jehovah as a friend. “And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend.” Exodus 33:11
When Moses realized the solemn mantle upon him to bring the people out of bondage he desired some help. The task ahead was emotionally overwhelming. It is interesting how Moses speaks with the Lord. “See, thou sayest unto me, Bring up this people: and thou hast not let me know whom thou wilt send with me. Yet thou has said, I know thee by name, and thou hast also found grace in my sight.” (Exodus 33:12) The Lord had already told Moses that he had found grace in His sight and yet Moses knows that without that grace and favor of God he simply could not fulfill the task before him. Let’s examine how Moses beseeches the Lord:
“Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight (the Lord had already told Moses that His grace was upon him), show me now thy way; that I might know thee, that I might find grace in thy sight (Moses obviously needs to be confirmed that God’s favor and grace is upon him)
How does the Lord answer Moses? “My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.” In other words, “Moses, my presence is all you need. No matter how daunting the task, I will give you rest.” Wow! What a promise.
Moses later asks for the Lord to show him His glory. The Lord responds that he will make all of His goodness pass before Moses and will proclaim the name of the Lord, but Moses was not allowed to see God’s face. “I will put thee in a clift of the rock, and will cover thee with my hand while I pass by. And I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen.” Exodus 33:22, 23.
Now let’s jump forward a few thousand years to the Last Supper that Jesus shares with His disciples. After Judas betrays the Lord and departs, leaving the assembly, the Lord knows only those who really loved him remain and He can talk plainly. He tells His disciples that He must leave to prepare a place for them.
Jesus speaks: “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.” John 14:3,4
It is really almost the same question that Moses asked thousands of years before. “Lord, show me thy ways.” In other words, in our human thinking we can believe in God and yet still feel we need direction and a clear path to see for the future. Many today are running hither and thither trying to find a place to settle because the world is changing before us. There is arising a desperation to know the “way” to peace and security.
Jesus explains to Thomas and the others that He is “The Way” and they already know Him so, of course, they know the Way.
This is how Jesus answered Thomas? “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.” John 14:6, 7 (His disciples had been with the Lord for over three years yet they still struggled with knowing who he really was. It took the resurrection and the outpouring of the Holy Ghost on the Day of Pentecost for the disciples to be empowered and never doubt again.)
I’m certain at this point the disciples, including Thomas, were awestruck. The Lord had just told them that God has a face and when they looked upon Him they would see the face of the Father. This point has been argued to the present day and one of the hardest concepts for the professing Christian world to accept – Our Lord is ONE and in the Hebrew the word ONE can also mean ALONE.
You can tell the disciples were having trouble with this concept even after Jesus spoke the above words. Philip said, “Philip saith unto him, Lord, show us the Father, and it sufficeth us (it will satisfy our curiosity).” John 14:8
Even the Lord gets frustrated at times, and it comes through with Jesus’s answer to Philip. “Have I been so long time with you and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? He that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Show us the Father?” John 14:9
Beloved, we must know who Jesus is for if ye believe not that “I am He” ye shall die in your sins.
Moses was not permitted to see the face of God because it was not yet time for the Lord Jehovah to indwell human flesh as the Son of God. Jesus/Yeshua means Jehovah has become our salvation.
If we abide in His Presence and cling to the Vine we can rest in peace knowing we have a glorious future with our Lord forever and ever.