Any Divine Office Head-scratching?




It’s weekly Q&A time.

Anything that has you scratching your head, frowing, or slamming your breviary on the table and saying, “I just don’t get it” should be shared here. I’ll do my best to figure it out for you.

This week I’ve done some head-scratching myself over what it means in the book of Exodus (which is playing all through lent in the Office of Readings) when it refers to “seeing God”. On Monday, Moses plus the seventy elders “beheld the God of Israel” and “He did not smite them. after gazing on God they could still eat and drink.”

Then yesterday, it says “the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, as one man speaks to another.” Yet in the same reading, Moses asks to see God’s glory, and God gives a very conditional Yes: “but my face you cannot see, for no man sees me and lives.”


So I guess speaking to God face to face is NOT the same as seeing his glory face to face. But I really wish I could read Hebrew.

Got any questions about the Divine Office? Leave them in comments.

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Daria Sockey is a freelance writer from western Pennsylvania. Her articles have appeared in many Catholic publications. She authored several of the original Ignatius Press Faith and Life catechisms in the 1980s, and more recently wrote five study guides for saints' lives DVDs distributed by Ignatius Press. She now writes regularly for the newly revamped Catholic Digest. Her newest book, The Everyday Catholic's Guide to the Liturgy of the Hours, will be published by Servant Books this spring. Feel Free to email her at [email protected]

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