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When Moses went up on the mountain, the cloud covered it, and the glory of the LORD settled on Mount Sinai. For six days the cloud covered the mountain, and on the seventh day the LORD called to Moses from within the cloud. To the Israelites the glory of the LORD looked like a consuming fire on top of the mountain. Then Moses entered the cloud as he went on up the mountain. And he stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights.
Exodus 24:15 – 18

“That’s awesome!” we say about many things these days. Yet in the Bible, to be awesome is to command both fear and adoration. God chose certain situations to highlight different parts of his character, including the awesome wonder of his glory, which was “like a consuming fire.” With Moses and the other leaders perched on Mount Sinai, God chose to demonstrate this characteristic to the people standing below.

At the time, the Israelites fully understood God’s greatness as he seemingly torched the mountain. Sadly, a month later the people were bowing down to a golden calf. Apparently, asking for signs and proof of God’s awesomeness did not guarantee they would continue to worship him.

Experiencing God’s awesomeness moves us one step closer to knowing him. So how do you get to the place where you personally recognize and respond to God’s greatness? Instead of attempting to force a respectful response in worship, begin by looking inward. Seeing God’s awesomeness also means acknowledging the truth about yourself — your own frailty and dependence on him for everything. God is greater than you can imagine.

Lord God, help me to experience your greatness …

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