11 months ago


(Please) let me see what

(Please) let me see what is on your kevod. Therefore, Moses wants proof and asks the Elohìm, since he is making promises of conquest, to see something that attests his physical presence. Moses needs some guarantees, he wants to talk to his people advisedly. If he is to convince or urge them to follow this Elohìm, instead of any others, he wants to be sure of what he is saying. This Elohìm understands the need and agrees with Moses' request, but warns him that what it is about to occur is extremely dangerous: it can also cause his death. Virtually, the “glory of God” that Moses asks to see...can kill a man! This means that the glorious manifestation of divinity is potentially lethal! Does the outcome of spiritual transcendence kill!? Isn't God able to control his power, we question? Obviously not! This event cannot be dispensed or otherwise filtered, the Elohìm can only provide guidance to control the effects of his “glory”, offset consequences, but not undo or mitigate them in advance: this “glory” necessarily acts with all its deadly power. If you think that kevód/kabód is usually translated as “glory” - which is a very abstract concept, a kind of theological category not easily definable - it becomes difficult to understand why the Elohìm prepares the event of “manifestation” by giving Moses a series of operational guidelines and practices, very clearly and exclusively aimed at physically safeguarding him. Instead, this is exactly what happens: the Elohìm gives Moses some practical guidelines, and precise precautions. 96

After telling Moses he cannot “look in front” of it (stand before it?) because he would die, he adds a piece of advice, practical guidance (Ex 33:21): Here is a place close to me and you will stand up (against) the Rock The indication is so colloquial and concrete as it seems we are watching the scene and the gesture of the arm indicating that very place; a sort of saying “stay here and try to keep firmly in place”. Apparently, this measure did not seem sufficient, considered that the Elohìm adds a further recommendation (Ex 33:22): 97

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