Sometimes in the middle of conversations among a group of persons, there is a sudden eerie silence for about a minute. In my culture when this happens, somebody will break the silence by saying, “God has passed.” Such is an equivalence of a biblical epiphany – God revealing his presence.
God may be everywhere, but he is not necessarily concentrated in everyplace at the same time. The President of a country rules his country, but the majority of the citizens may never see their president; except on TV. Yet everybody adheres to any presidential pronouncements.
Moses was, and is among the fortunate few who see God and hear him speak.
Before the exodus God revealed himself to Moses through a burning bush. And he continued to reveal himself to him through the mountaintop experiences where his glory was within a cloud.
On the seventh day while on Mount Sinai, “God called to Moses from within the cloud… Moses entered the cloud…And he stayed on the mountain forty days and forty nights.”
On the Mount of Transfiguration Moses and Elijah were present with Jesus to show how God is a God of Continuity. These men had direct communion with God. Moses was up the mountain for forty days and forty nights. We are not told that he had any food with him, so while waiting for instructions from God he was fasting.
In the same way, Jesus who is the final revelation of God fasted in the desert for forty days and forty nights. From then on he was anointed and empowered for service.
We have heard many stories of people who attempted to fast for forty days but collapsed in the process. It is not because Jesus did it that we too must do it. Fasting is a commendable spiritual excercise, but you do not do it as if putting the LORD to a test. We are soon to enter the season of Lent, which is a recommended period for Christian fasting. Please, those who are strong enough to withstand should fast for forty days; not forty days and forty nights!
Besides, fasting should have a goal. Moses did not come down from the mountain until he had received instructions for the Tabernacle and its furnishing and “the two tablets of Testimony, the tablets of stone inscribed by the finger of God”(Ex.31:18).
In the same way, Jesus did not leave the desert until he had been strengthened by overcoming the temptations of the devil.
Mountaintop withdrawal is spiritually useful if it has an objective.
May we be inspired to once in a while have even a single day to isolate ourselves from the hullabaloo of life and be with God so that he can instruct us! If only half our prayers were based on instructions from God we would not be this stagnant; while making progress!
Prayer: LORD thank you for making yourself known to us in your Son Jesus Christ. Amen!
Have a blessed day! Peace be with you!