Posted by: Michelle Knoll | June 20, 2012

So Where Did He Go?

Another startling discovery from Numbers 14, verse 14:

And they will tell [it] to the inhabitants of this land: [for] they have heard that thou LORD [art] among this people, that thou LORD art seen face to face, and [that] thy cloud standeth over them, and [that] thou goest before them, by day time in a pillar of a cloud, and in a pillar of fire by night.

Yes, I know, it’s King James version.  So sue me.

But look at what it says!

“…Thou LORD are seen face to face…”

“They’ve heard, God, that You’ve been SEEN.  Face to face.  People have seen you.”  That’s what Moses was saying!

Face. To. Face.

Now, I’ll take the time to show you the translation of this phrase from Strong’s Concordance.  Here’s what it says:

  • Thou LORD – Jehovah, the existing One
  • art seen – To see, look at, inspect, perceive, consider, observe, discern, distinguish,
  • face to face – This word “face” actually is the word for “eye” in the Hebrew, so it would be “eye to eye.”

So was Moses saying that the LORD God Jehovah was seen, looked at, observed, even inspected with their eyes?  They saw Him?

Just for grins, let’s look at another passage where God was seen, in Exodus 24:

“Then went up Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel : And they saw the God of Israel: and [there was] under his feet as it were a paved work of a sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in [his] clearness. And upon the nobles of the children of Israel he laid not his hand: also they saw God, and did eat and drink.”

They SAW God.  They even saw His feet.  That’s what it says.  And Strong’s Concordance says the Hebrew word being translated here as “feet” is… “feet.”

One more.  Can you read a little bit longer?  There’s one more I want to mention.

Genesis 18:

“And the LORD appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre: and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day;”

See that word “appeared”?  It’s the same word as “saw” in the last passage, and the same word as “seen” in the first passage at the top.  So the LORD was seen by Abraham, as he sat in the tent door.  If he didn’t actually see the LORD, why did he get up on his feet and go meet Him?  And actually, in the following verses, after seeing the LORD, Abraham then saw three men altogether, and ran to them.  Then he asked the Lord to not leave until he had fixed them something to eat!

And they really did eat!  Right there, in front of Abraham.  Wow.

After they ate, they started to leave, and Abraham walked with them for a little bit.  Then the LORD said to the other men, “should I hide from Abraham what I intend to do?”  The other men left, but the passage says that Abraham was still standing “before the LORD.”  This means he was facing the LORD.  He was in front of Him.

They talked for a while.  And then the end of the chapter says the LORD “went His way.”

He left.  He walked away.  As soon as He finished talking to Abraham about Sodom, He departed.

Now, a lot of people would say, “Oh, Abraham didn’t really see the LORD.  He was just in the LORD’s presence.”

Uh huh.  Right.  So Abraham didn’t really see the LORD eat the meal they prepared either, right?  I suppose the cow just sat there in the sun and baked the rest of the afternoon?

Abraham saw the LORD.  Moses saw the LORD.  The seventy elders that went with Moses also saw the LORD!

So, what happened?  Why can’t we see Him now?

Where did He go?



  1. One could make the argument that any time there is a physical manifestation of God on this physical earth, in physical time, that it is God the Son, i.e., Jesus.

    We tend to time-box Jesus into his 33 years on earth mentioned in the Gospels — but remember, John 1 talks about the Word existing from the beginning. So, depending on one’s Christology, it would be no problem to say these are earlier appearances of Jesus on earth.

    Just a thought, to add to your thoughts. 🙂

    • And I love your thoughts! So keep sharing them!
      Now, take a look at Genesis 3:18, and Matthew 7:16. The only two verses in the King James Version where the word “thorns” and “thistles” are used together in a sentence.
      He was there in Genesis; He was there in Matthew. And I think he connected thorns and thistles to grapes and figs, because Adam and Eve had “sewn” together fig leaves. 🙂
      It’s just my thinking, and I may be wrong, but isn’t it possible they used grape vines to “sew” those leaves together? And Jesus saw that, back in Genesis, so He talked about it in Matthew.
      And there’s the fig tree He cursed because it didn’t produce. Yes, it was symbolic because it didn’t produce. But when He saw it, did He remember a tree back in the garden? Is there more to that story than we’re seeing? I wonder.

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