Wednesday, March 19, 2014

In the Cleft of the Rock

O. T. #249  "In the Cleft of the Rock"
March 19, 2014
Exodus 33-Part 4
And it shall come to pass, while My glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a clift of the rock, and will cover thee with My hand while I pass by.   Exodus 33:22


During our family reunion one hot summer, we all went walking on a hiking trail. Sweating, hot, tired, we found relief in the cleft of the rock which was beside a small waterfall. What a cool relief; a place of relaxation, a refuge from the heat of the hot summer sun.
Our hymn book at church has a couple of songs about the cleft of the rock in which Moses stood as God in all His glory passed in front of him. It was a place of refuge. Can you picture it? Hold that thought as we continue this chapter.

We have seen Moses as the intercessor, mediator, and now as the worshiper. Moses had been promised that God's presence would go with Israel into the Promised Land. But was that enough?
Moses found grace in God's sight and He knows Moses by name.

Moses desired a further, fuller knowledge of God and so requested show me thy glory. What follows is an account of God coming down in the form of a man to appear gloriously and visibly before Moses. But the glory and splendor was so great that God had to shield Moses' view with His hand, so that Moses would not see the fuller essence of God's glory as it shone from His face and would only see God's back parts. This Christophany was to occur upon Mount Sinai the next day. (Falwell)

Moses wanted a new vision of the glory of God. God's goodness means His character and attributes. The word back carries the idea of "what remains," that is, the afterglow of the glory of God-what was "left over" after God passed by. God is spirit. (Wiersbe)

Do we desire more of God in our heart? In our life? In our family? In our neighborhood? In our church?
Do we desire to see Him working around us?
Are we looking for Him today?


God agrees to show Himself, His glory to Moses by:
  • putting Moses in the clift/cleft of the rock;
  • covering Moses with God's hand until He passed by;
  • removing His hand so Moses could see God's back;
  • without seeing God's face.
In Hebrew, the word for clift means a fissure. (Strong's Concordance)
According to Webster's Dictionary, a fissure is a crack or cleft; a cleft is a crack, crevice, split.

There is a town in the south west corner of  Missouri, named Noel (pronounced with a long o). As you drive along the highway on the outskirts of town, your car will pass under a huge rock hanging over the road. Most of the time water drips off of it. What a beautiful sight to see and experience, being in the cleft of the rock.

When we need it in our life, we can find shelter from a storm, safety from our enemies, comfort from distress, and relief from temptations when we get into God's cleft of the rock. There, God can pass by to reassure us that He is in control. He can bring us whatever we need at the moment. Such a loving and compassionate God we have!

Will you join Him there in the cleft of the rock the next time you need it? He is waiting for you.


Come into the cleft of the rock, for Jesus is my Rock.

Watch and listen as He passes by.

Thank Him!

He Hideth My Soul by Fannie Crosby:

A wonderful Savior is Jesus my Lord, A wonder Savior to me; He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock, Where rivers of pleasure I see.

A wonderful Savior is Jesus my Lord, He taketh my burden away; He holdeth me up, and I shall not be moved, He giveth me strength as my day.

With numberless blesssings each moment He crowns, and filled with His fullness divine, I sing in my rapture, oh, glory to God For such a Redeemer as mine!

when clothed in His brightness, transported I rise To meet Him in clouds of the sky, His perfect salvation, His wonderful love, I'll shout with the millions on high.

He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock That shadows a dry, thirsty land; He hideth my life in the depths of His love, And covers me there with His hand, And covers me there with His hand.

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