Seeing the Face of God


Dr. Jon R. Roebuck, Executive Director

unknown-3 Check out these verses from the story of ancient Israel as they gathered around Mount Sinai…


“Then Moses went up with Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel, and they saw the God of Israel; and under His feet there appeared to be a pavement of sapphire, as clear as the sky itself.” Exodus 24:9-10

You may want to read those two verses again.  Seventy-four men go up to Mount Sinai and there they “saw the God of Israel.”  It’s not the kind of thing that happens every day.  These men, in some magnificent, mysterious, glorious way were able to catch a glimpse of God.  They even described the pavement of sapphire
on which He walked.  (I know what you’re thinking… I thought no one could look on God and live.  That’s usually the case.  But God can certainly reveal Himself to whomever He chooses in whatever way He chooses.  And at least on this day, God was seen by the elders of Israel.)  Don’t you know that this image never left their hearts or minds for as long as they lived.  How many times did they tell the story of this day?
Let’s be honest, catching a glimpse of Almighty God is a rare thing.  I have not seen His face, nor has anyone else that I know.  I do hope to look on His face one day when His Son introduces me to Him in glory… but that’s a different devotional thought for another day.  Today I’m more concerned about seeing the face of God in the everyday lives we live.  The truth of the matter is that we CAN see Him each day if we know where to look.  God inhabits His creation.  And so God is revealed to us in tiny glimpses through the faces of people that we encounter.  How’s that for a thought… a little of God is present in every face we see.  If that is true, then God can be seen in the faces of rich and powerful as well as the faces of the poor and powerless.  He’s present in the face of that homeless guy selling papers on the corner.  He’s present in the face of that unwed pregnant girl at the shelter.  He’s present in the face of that troubled teenager you are raising and in the face of the senior adult at the nursing home.  And yes, He is even seen in the face that stares back at you from the mirror.  And if that is true… then suddenly your face and the face of the billions who share the planet take on a whole new worth.  What a glorious day it would be today, if you and I really began to see others the way that God does.  What if we looked closely enough to even see His resemblance?

To see His face today will require several things.  We have look beyond our first-impression judgment of others.  We cannot see color, nationality, nor gender if doing so clouds our vision.  We have to hear beyond language. If we think God only speaks English we are mistaken.  We also have to look beyond our long-formed impression of others.  History and experience with an individual cannot be allowed to blind us to the image of God within them.  So look closely today at the faces you see.  You may just catch a glimpse of your Father.