Then Moses and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel went up, and they saw the God of Israel. There was under his feet as it were a pavement of sapphire stone, like the very heaven for clearness. And … they beheld God, and ate and drank.
If the pastor of your church gave a basic Bible trivia quiz one Sunday morning and asked the question, “Who in the Old Testament saw God on Sinai’s summit?”, wouldn’t you raise your hand immediately and exclaim, “Moses!” The fact that two guys named Nadab and Abihu, along with seventy other anonymous individuals, saw God on the mountain and even shared a meal in His presence has got to be one of the most underappreciated moments in all the Bible!
Sometimes, as a soccer lover, I’m a little envious of Pele for his unrivaled skill with the ball. Sometimes, as a writer, I’m a little envious of Mark Twain’s mastery of wit. Sometimes, as a lover of adventure, I’m a little envious of Lewis and Clark’s storied exploratory career. But as a saint, as a man made in the image of a God I’ve never seen with my own eyes, as a disciple of the Messiah Whose scarred hands I’ve never yet held, I’m absolutely brimming with envy over these seventy men who had the ineffable privilege of seeing God first hand! Oh how I wish I could put down my pen today and sit at their feet instead. “What was it like to see Him?!” I’d ask. “Describe it—the moment—the emotions—take your time! Did you fall on your face and tremble as His form appeared around the bend? Could you even breathe? Tell me everything—every little detail! Don’t keep a vision this wondrous to yourself for goodness’ sake!”
But, come to think of it, we have seen God, friend. Not on a sapphire pedestal, but still in heavenly clearness. In the peace that fills our hearts as we pray; in the promises of His word that light our path; in the touch of grace He sends through friends and loved ones and sometimes even complete strangers. So, let’s ascend that mountain by faith today and feast afresh in the presence of our Lord, shall we?!