Exodus 33:18-20

Moses said, "I pray thee, show me thy glory." And He said, "I will make all my goodness pass before you, and will proclaim before you My name 'The LORD'; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy. But," He said, "you cannot see My face; for man shall not see Me and live."

C.S. Lewis once remarked something to the effect that those who glibly think it would be fun to look into the face of absolute goodness simply had no idea what they were talking about.  "God is not an uncle," says Rabbi Abraham Heschel, "God is an earthquake."  Encountering absolute goodness in our current condition would be, for most of us, like staring into the sun without shades or trying to trying to capture the Pacific Ocean in a bucket.  That's why Moses had to be protected and could not see the Lord's face.  And that is why the promise of the Gospel is so astonishing: "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God."  Today, ask for the good Holy Spirit and let Him change you so that you may one day see God and live forever.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a Catholic author, blogger, and speaker.

Subscribe to CE
(It's free)

Go to Catholic Exchange homepage