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Exodus 34:5  (King James Version)
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<< Exodus 34:4   Exodus 34:6 >>


Exodus 34:5-7

In Exodus 33:18, Moses requests God to display His glory. How did God respond to that request? He preached him a sermon on His name! Or we could say that He expounded before Moses on the third commandment. What we have here is probably just the barest summary of what God said—the notes, as it were, of what He talked about more fully. He likely preached him a sermon on eleven names of God: Yahweh, El, the Merciful One, the Gracious One, the Longsuffering One, the Almighty, the Bountiful One, the True One, the Preserver of Abundance, He Who Takes Away Iniquity, and He Who Visits Iniquity.

What He did before Moses was rehearse His nature. It was so encouraging to Moses, because he knew then that the children of Israel would not be abandoned—that God would be with him—because of what He is. He would remain with them, though not because Israel deserved His presence in any way, shape, or form—every single one of them deserved to be dead! But because God is God, He would continue through with His purpose, and these names exemplified what He would be doing.

So God did not give Moses a vision of His majesty and power, but of His character. The glory of God is the manifestation of His nature, of His character, of His way of relating to His creation—especially to His children. His names are signposts of His nature. They are reminders to us of what we can expect Him to do. That is why Moses was so encouraged.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Holiness (Part 1)



Exodus 34:5-8

What man or institution has these qualities? In addition, He is the eternal Creator, Healer, Savior, Judge, and the very pinnacle of wisdom, understanding, and grace.

Yet, mankind is so deluded that, without realizing it, many worship their consciences formed by their own earthly experiences. Their consciences are nothing more than an inner voice, a sort of a moral policeman that has taken up residence within. Can it be trusted? Do we trust ours? This is better than nothing, but conscience is easily perverted and often abnormally developed because it is almost entirely dependent upon upbringing and propaganda from this world's media. Since this is Satan's world, there is little chance that a person's conscience will be entirely aligned with God's standards.

Others superimpose on God their conceptions of a human father, but this, too, is woefully inadequate. What if one has no father as part of his life? What if his father was stupid, foolish, tyrannical, or over-indulgent? What kind of positive impression will that leave? Is God merely a grand old man, a head-patting, gray-headed, somewhat doddering person whose mind wanders back to better times, forgetful of what is occurring on the earth and in our lives?

God's name is "I was, I am, I will be." He has lived for eternity, but He is not old; He is every bit as modern as tomorrow. When God came as a man, He showed He did not have a completely placid temperament, a God who would not say, "Boo!" He did not just let sleeping dogs lie. He was not uninspired and uninspiring; Jesus stirred people up so that they said, "No man ever spoke like this Man!" (John 7:46). He challenged and exposed the hypocrisies of the religion of His day and was moved to deep anger by the shameless exploitation taking place at the Temple. He was of such personality that He walked unscathed through hostile crowds. Jesus was meek, but the term indicates that He had the power to use as He willed, restraining it as an act of mercy, wisdom, and love.

Christianity is not for the soft and sentimental. We have a war on our hands, and our God is a powerful warrior—the Lord of Hosts is His name. He is on our side, but He demands our loyalty.

John W. Ritenbaugh
The First Commandment



Exodus 34:5

God was preaching him a sermon on what He is. The names of God describe Him. They tell us what God is, what He does, and what He will do for us.

Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Forbearance



Exodus 34:5-7

Here is how God obliged Moses: Besides passing before him and revealing His form except for His face, He preaches to him what amounted to a sermon on His name—on the third commandment! He expounds eleven attributes: Yahweh, El, the Merciful Being, the Gracious One, the Longsuffering One, the Mighty One, the Bountiful Being, the True One, the Preserver of Bountifulness, He who bears away iniquity, and He who visits iniquity.

God did not demonstrate for Moses His power and majesty, but His love, His way of relating to His creation. In other words, the glory of God is the manifestation of His character, His nature, His manner of dealing with His people, His potential children. His names are signposts of His attributes and character. They advertise His nature. They remind us of what we can expect Him to do and what He requires.

John W. Ritenbaugh
The Third Commandment



Exodus 34:5-8

God expounds eleven attributes: YHWH, El, the Merciful One, the Gracious One, the Longsuffering One, the Mighty One, the Kind and Loving One, the True One, the One who Preserves Kindness, the Forgiving One, and the Chastising One.

God gives Moses, not so much a vision of His power and majesty, but of His love, of how He relates to His creation. The real glory of God is His character, His nature, especially toward His children. His names are signposts of His nature, reminders of what we can expect Him to do as we live by faith.

John W. Ritenbaugh
The Third Commandment (1997)




Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing Exodus 34:5:

Exodus 20:1-2
1 Kings 19:10-18
Psalm 73:12-14

 

<< Exodus 34:4   Exodus 34:6 >>



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