Ok, I’ll fess up… that crazy story in Exodus 33 yesterday has messed me up.
[As an aside, have you noticed how often what I read in the Word messes me up? Sheesh!]
What happened? Why didn’t Joshua leave? Why didn’t God leave? Why did Moses leave? What went down in that tent?
Joshua is called a “young man.” This episode takes place early in the meanderings of Israel in the desert. Not long before, Moses had gone up the mountain and played secretary to God’s dictation of what we call the 10 commandments, come back down and found Aaron and the other folks doing a golden calf two-step.
Bad scene. God took to calling them “stiff-necked people” and was ready to wipe the desert floor with them.
Fast forward a few days. Moses sets up the first recorded tent meeting so he could have closer access to the Almighty (I’m sure that climbing up a mountain multiple times was getting tough… Moses was 80 years old after all!).
And that set the stage for Joshua’s hide and seek contest with God.
Josh obviously wanted more of God. Or he was so overwhelmed by God’s presence that he couldn’t move.
I sense that it was the former.
How long did he stay there? Are verses 12 forward the conversation that Moses had with God and that Joshua was privey to? This is where Moses asked to see God’s “glory” and the stage was set for God to pass in front of him.
What must have young man Joshua thought? He’s not called “young man” again. In fact, he takes on a different persona.
He was changed in that tent. He went seeking and found perhaps what he didn’t anticipate.
He found more than he was looking for.
I think I want to play hide and seek with God…