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January 10, 2007

Comments

Lauraconk

Hey,
I haven't written in a LONG time... but since you've chosen one of my favorite parts of scripture and I happened to check out your blog this morning (was hoping for some new Liam pics!)...

I LOVE this... Moses, speaks audibly to God and is diligently seeking Him.....and still feels uncertain. Doesn't make me feel so bad when I have my moments!!

Later in that chapter we get to my actual favorite part... Moses wants to REALLY experience God... wants to SEE His Glory. I don't think he's doubting, but rather wants intimacy and MORE confirmation maybe. God owes him nothing. And yet our faithful God, though not one to grant too much insight of the BIG picture does recognize Moses' struggles and rewards him with a peek at his Glory.
The way God protects Moses by hiding him in the cleft of the rock and covering him with his "hand".. only allowing Moses to see his "back" as He passes reminds me of how God moves through our lives and does a mighty work. At the time, we don't know what is happening exactly and we cannot see much of the picture. BUT if we're looking for Him, we can certainly see the handprints of where He's been and what He's done in our lives. The protection He has bestowed and the journey He has led us on! In that way, we see Him with our spiritual eyes and experience some of His glory, too! SO COOL!!!!

Well, good morning and tell Val to call me later. STILL NO FINGERPRINT results... but again, God is up to something and His presence is recognized :))

deborah

It sounds very interesting. What exactly does "living in the presence of God" mean, and how do you plan on doing it or what steps to you plan taking towards that goal?

Bill

No definite plans, Deb, just a vague desire! ;-)

By "living in the presence of God," I mean that I want to be more consciously aware and welcoming of his presence. Hopefully that's somewhat definitive.

deborah

Sorry, I was scanning a Dr. Phil article (my bad) and one thing I agree with him on is that to make a commitment you have to be clear aboout your goal and have specific steps to get there.

Would being more aware include looking at things that you would normally take for granted and attributing them to God's providence? That is something that I've been working on.

Bill

This is your only warning. You will be banned from this site if you continue to mention Dr. Phil in your comments.

;-) Just kidding.

I'm not sure if I want to attribute more things to God's providence, but perhaps I should. It's for me to know how to approach this.

Ken

Dr. Phil, Dr. Phil, Dr. Phil
:-)
I would agree that you need to quantify/qualify what you are trying to do, otherwise it ain't gonna happen. Maybe you need to set smaller goals that lead to the state you are looking to achieve? You could focus on some aspect of this experience each month (for example) adding the next month onto (and continuing) the experience from the previous month(s).

In this way you would be building towards your goal, you wouldn't feel overwhelmed by the hugeness (potentially) of what you are trying to do, and the short-term accomplishments will help encourage you to continue on.

Bill

Anybody interested in the questions I asked in this post? 8-)

TomTom

I am very interested in your questions, but I'm personally not sure we CAN answer them. They are variations of questions that have been pondered, debated, and had blood shed over for centuries.

Maybe it would be easier to figure out why Deborah is into Dr. Phil!

;-)

deborah

*rolls eyes and sighs regarding Dr. Phil*

The questions, I think that God chose Abraham because of his great faith and the fact that he tried to keep God's commands. (Gen 26:5). After that, I believe that God keeps his promise to Abraham. As for the person of Jesus, that is probably a series of posts rather than a quick answer in a comment section. A lot would be theory as well. I'm not sure that there is an answer other than that which might seem as a cop out - "because He did".

Perhaps God sent someone we could identify with, perhaps if we needed to die then he, as a sacrifice in our place, needed to be like us but perfect.

Bill

I'm not sure that I could agree to the idea that Abraham was chosen because of his faith.

deborah

Okay, God drew straws.

deborah

Do you disagree with Gen 26:5 or my interpretation of it?

Bill

Your interpretation of it. I think that's talking about how Abraham had been faithful in his covenant with God.

Question: That passage says that Abraham kept God's laws. What laws? The "Law" hadn't been written yet. Was Abraham given a special copy for review ahead of time? ;-)

deborah

I'm going to have to say that yes, there was a special copy given ahead of time, sort of. In Gen 7:2 God refers to clean and unclean amimals, but where, prior to that, is a listing of clean and unclean animals?

There are numerous commands given prior to Abraham, from being fruitful, being caretakers of the earth, not killing Cain, the rules of eating meat (Gen 9:4). I would have to assume that there were a number of interactions between man and God that produced a general body of known commands.

I look at Gen 26:5 as an extension of Gen 12:2. God give Abraham a promise, and in 26:5, God tells Isaac why.

Do you have anything better?

Chase

Bill, Great post, questions and comments. Regarding Israel, I believe in the Old Testament Yahweh tells the Israelites they were not chosen because of anything in them, rather to make His name great.

Bill

Chase,

That makes sense to me. I just wonder why God chose to make himself known through a specific people group the way he did. Then, of course, other questions come up about why ask them to be so violent according to certain passages?

Again, these questions are perhaps not completely answerable, but something to wonder about.

Chase

Definitely something to wonder about.

Natasha

Hi Bill! Am not really great at answering questions on GOD's actions, and I may even say something wrong here... as you know am not very literate in this area (born Buddhist studying Islam at the moment!) I apologise in advance. Perhaps I could try give my veiw point in a more open manner, initially concentrating on just a bit more than Christianity?

There is ONE GOD, yes. But just to remind all that- many other religions exist where followers beleive they are the chosen people or that their prophet/messenger of GOD was in the initial preferred group of GOD, through which to pass on the message. These religions may have risen from different geographical regions.

Going back to your question: perhaps when GOD chose Abraham and his decendents.....the time and place was right to set the people on the path? A time humans were in need and their social setting and intelligence was perfect- for them to be able absorb the message?

And Jesus? Perhaps so that people can take Jesus and his life story as an example and try live in the presence of God?

r

Hello! Hope all is going well for you in the new year!
I find it interesting that you make the statement that you all of a sudden decided to live in the presence of God. To me this would assume that you were not living in the presence of God before this decision? It has been my belief that when we recieve Christ as our personal savior,we are immediately filled with the Holy Spirit who is in fact God. So are'nt we then in the presence of God? It is we who chose to ignore that presence by not developing a personal intimate relationship with God and so there fore do not feel His presence.

Bill

Hi R,

You wrote: "It is we who chose to ignore that presence by not developing a personal intimate relationship with God and so there fore do not feel His presence."

That's the kind of thing I'm thinking about when I say I want to live more in the presence of God. Not that I think he hasn't been there, just that I don't act likt it!

Christian

"I just wonder why God chose to make himself known through a specific people group the way he did. Then, of course, other questions come up about why ask them to be so violent according to certain passages?"

I find your musings helpful and I've had some of the same questions myself. Part of the answer for me is that God does the choosing. Abraham was not a particularly righteous man in many ways. He sold out Sarah twice, allowing her to be in jeopardy rather than to risk his own life. But he did believe God and God credited it to him as righteousness.

Why Israel and what is God's heart for Ishmael who he also promised to bless? Good questions.

Concerning the violence in the Old Testament. Perhaps I would not understand grace if there was not wrath in tension. Perhaps I should live with the understanding that I deserve far less. Just my musings - - and I appreciate yours.

Christian

Bill

Natasha,

I was assuming a Christian context, but you're right, Christians aren't the only ones who talk about being chosen by "God."

I like your thoughts about the time being right, by the way. I guess I'm just wondering why a god who presumably do anything, would choose a relatively subtle approach. Why not just write messsages in the clouds! ;-)

r

What do you mean "Why did He choose to make his presence known through the person of Jesus"? Was'nt it Gods plan since the garden that we would have and need a redeemer? God is Jesus and Jesus is God, " I and the Father are one" Read the first capter of John to know why Jesus came. Jesus is part of the trinity yes, but the trinity is all God.

Bill

I didn't challenge whether or not it was God's plan. I asked why he planned it that way.

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