The Israelites at the foot of the mountain saw an awesome sight. The awesome glory of the Lord on the mountaintop looked like a devouring fire. (Exodus 24:17)
What an awesome view! As I stood watching the setting sun over the Canadian Rockies, I was awestruck by its beauty. The deep orange sky turned to lighter shades and intermingled with the cumulous clouds overhead giving it a ghostlike appearance.
What do you suppose the Israelites felt as they stood at the foot of the mountain and saw the glory of God on display? Were they fearful? Did it silence them? Did the glory of God generate a great respect?
To be awesome is to command foth fear and adoration. God chose Mount Sinai to demonstrate his character, including his awesomeness. God torched the mountain. Fire and smoke covered its heights. The people trembled with fear. You would think that such a display of power and glory would guarantee their worship. Sadly, a month later the people were bowing down to a golden calf.
Worship is not something that can be coerced through displays of supernatural power. Experiencing the awesomeness of God is only one step closer to him. We need to look forward and acknowledge the truth about ourselves, confessing our own frality and depending on him for everything. Picture yourself standing before God and let God's spirit give you a yearning for his presence in worship. God desires to impact and work in the lives of those who humble themselves before him.
The next time you see the awesome glory of God in nature, offer him words of praise in worshipful adoration for such a glorious scene. God is always ready to hear our praise.
Thought for the Day: God's glory can be seen all around us if we look long enough.