His Ways or His Acts?

He made known his ways unto Moses, his acts unto the children of Israel. Psalm 103:7 (KJV)

If we look at this verse in the New Living Translation, something interesting is made evident.

He revealed his character to Moses and his deeds to the people of Israel. Psalm 103:7 (New Living Translation, NLT)

What we see is that God made His ways known to and revealed His character to Moses. In other words, Moses got to actually know God Himself. On the other hand, the people of Israel only saw His acts and deeds- what He did. Israel saw His works, but Moses saw God.

The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. Exodus 33:11a (New International Version, NIV)

Why was Moses the only one out of the nation to experience close fellowship with the Lord? Because He was the only one to draw near and seek the Lord’s face.

Now therefore, I pray thee, if I have found grace in thy sight, shew me now thy way, that I may know thee, that I may find grace in thy sight: and consider that this nation is thy people. And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest. And he said unto him, If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. Exodus 33:13-15 (KJV)

Notice that Moses was willing to give up entering the promised land if it meant that God would not be with him. He wanted God more than He wanted what God could do for him. The rest of the nation, with the exception of Joshua and Caleb, were interested only in God meeting their needs and wanted no relationship with Him. They merely wanted what He could give them. They complained and griped, pulling away from God’s presence instead of drawing near.

The Israelites had hard, selfish hearts. Although they had been treated cruelly as slaves, they were not grateful to be free. Instead, they clung to a victim mentality and looked for God to remove every discomfort, rather than glorifying Him for the miraculous provision He gave them. No matter what they received, they always wanted more; wanted something better. They were never satisfied because they were seeking the wrong thing. Had they sought after God, all their needs would have been met abundantly, and they would have been satisfied and content.

Are we seeking God as Moses did, with an abandonment that says “If you don’t go with me I don’t want to go?” Or are we focused on the things we want Him to do for us?

If we seek Him, we will find Him, and in His presence is everything we need. Let us set our hearts to know God and His ways. His character is worth seeking, and when we pursue knowing Him, every desire we have is fulfilled.

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