Halloween is not my favorite day. I can remember taking my young son trick-or-treating when he was a toddler. We went to a neighborhood that went all out with their decorations. House upon house had darkened their porch, made hatchets with dripping blood and had recordings of howling and moaning. Decorating with Evil. I remember my baby boy and the fear mixed with desire because he knew that if he could walk past the evil he would get…candy.
Halloween is about masks and disguises. It is about dressing up and pretending to be someone or something else. You’ve had that moment that someone walked up to you in a mask and just stood next to you. Standing there uncomfortable you wonder who it is…
Moses wore a mask. Really the burning bush, part the red sea, let-my-people-go, guy wore a mask. He had been up on Mount Sinai. Exodus 33:11 says, “The Lord spoke to Moses face to face as a man speaks to a friend.” While up on the mountain with God, Moses asked for something huge…he asked to see God. Not just a burning bush or a cloud but to actually see the glory of God. The problem is to see the face of the holy God would have utterly destroyed Moses.
So God set Moses in the cleft of a rock and covered his eyes until after God passed by. Moses was able to see the result of God’s glory – the trail that came after. That trail was enough to set Moses face aglow. When Moses came back down his glowing face freaked people out; they were terrified.
So Moses put on a mask. The Bible actually calls it a veil.
Seems like a pretty good idea right? I mean that way the people would not be afraid and could actually hear God’s message for them. And that worked pretty good until Moses started liking the mask a little too much. Remember the mask was not God’s idea…it was Moses’. The glowing face would fade the longer he was away from God’s presence.
The problem according to the Apostle Paul is that Moses would keep on the mask even though the glory of God faded from his face.
The commandments given through Moses were hard to keep. People make mistakes and sin. Sin takes us out of favor with God, and we no longer reflect His glory. That changed with Jesus. His death and resurrection changed things. He became the ultimate, eternal sacrifice for our sins. His sacrifice actually takes away the veil and we are able to fully reflect the glory of God.
Paul says, “So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord – who is Spirit – makes us more and more like Him as we are changed into His glorious image.” (1 Cor 3:18 NLT)
As Christians our dwelling in Christ transforms us into His image and reflect our Holy God to those around us.
Our theme for CYT in 2014 is “Through the Looking Glass”. It is based on 1 Corinthians 3:18 that we would reflect the glory of the Lord. The when people look at us they would see Christ. By ourselves we are not perfect but in Christ we are made clean and holy – for God’s glory.
Contributed by Pastor Tom Kirkendall, CYT Inc. Board Member