[ Previous ]   [ Next ]   [ Contents ]   [ Home ]

1.0  Not God Directly: Manifestations of God

It is not permissible for man to see God as he truly is.  No man has ever seen God, as he truly is.  God himself asserted this to Moses when this exchange took place:

EXODUS 33:17 And the LORD said unto Moses, I will do this thing also that thou hast spoken: for thou hast found grace in my sight, and I know thee by name.
EXODUS 33:18 And he said, I beseech thee, shew me thy glory.
EXODUS 33:19 And he said, I will make all my goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of the LORD before thee; and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will shew mercy on whom I will shew mercy.
EXODUS 33:20 And he said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live.
EXODUS 33:21 And the LORD said, Behold, there is a place by me, and thou shalt stand upon a rock:
EXODUS 33:22 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 33:23 And I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see my back parts: but my face shall not be seen.

Note:  Verse 18 was said by Moses, all the others were said by God.  (At Romans 9:14-15, the Apostle Paul states that Exodus 33:19 was said by God.)

Based upon Exodus 33:20, no man can see God as he actually is, and live:  for God said in plain language "...there shall no man see me, and live."  It should come as no surprise to us that God used the words "thou canst not see my face" to express this, since even we ourselves would either disguise or hide our face, of all things, when we do not wish to be recognized.  (Phony glasses with a big rubber nose, and a false moustache and eyebrows; perhaps a bandana around the face, etc.)

Later, at Exodus 33:23, God said that although Moses was to see God's "back parts," His face was not to be seen.  This again should come as no surprise to us, since if any of us were to disguise ourselves in public, our own backsides, (or arms, or feet, etc.) may very well be seen, though we would still wear a mask to hide our face.  Yet the point should not be ignored, that God said:

EXODUS 33:20 And he said, Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live.

...meaning (in part) that no man can see God in His true form, and live.  At any rate, Jesus gave about the best description of God when He stated:

JOHN 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

If anyone would know, He would.

1.1  The word "manifest" defined

For the definition of the Greek word for "manifest,"  we shall refer to Strongs Exhaustive Concordance, Complete and Unabridged, Compact Edition, by James H. Strong, Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, concordance p. 658, Greek lexicon p. 75.  The word numbers used here are standard Strong's numbers:

5318 Φανερος "phaneros" from 5316; shining, i.e., apparent (lit. or fig.); neut. (as adv.) publically, externally
5319 Φανεροω "phaneroo" from 3518; to render apparent (lit. or fig.)

"Phaneros" (word 5318, above) is the Greek word for "manifest," as an adjective.  "Phaneroo" (word 5319, above) is the verb form of the same word.  In like fashion, Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines the word "manifest" as:

"manifest" adj (14th century):  readily perceived by the senses and especially by the sight.  Synonomous with "evident."
"manifest" vt (14th century):  to make evident or certain by showing or displaying.  Synonomous with "show."

[ Previous ]   [ Next ]   [ Contents ]   [ Home ]
Valid HTML 4.01! Valid CSS!
Email us at contact@halfshekel.com if you have any questions, or comments.
Last modified: Thu Jan 13 22:21:45 CST 2005