Thursday, May 25, 2017

Exodus 33:11 -- On Talking to God as a Friend

"And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle."
Exodus 33:11

The whole idea of seeing God is an interesting one in the scriptures.  We read a lot of things that seem to be contradictory.  For instance, "No man hath seen God at any time" (1 John 4:12).  And even later in this chapter, "Thou canst not see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live" (Exodus 33:20).  And yet, here it says that Moses spoke with God face to face.  We also know that the Brother of Jared saw the Lord.  We know that Joseph Smith saw both the Father and the Son in his vision, and of course many, many people saw and interacted with Christ during his life in Jerusalem and after his resurrection in the land of Bountiful.  So, there is obviously some additional information that we need to understand to resolve these seeming contradictions in the scriptures.

Luckily, some other scriptural clarifications clears things up a bit.  Moses 1:11 clarifies that Moses had to be transfigured in order to see God.  The Joseph Smith translation clarifies further than no sinful man can see God and live... which rules out most of us, given, but still leaves that narrow possibility open for people who have repented and who work to keep themselves clean.  Clarification of 1 John 4:12 also mentions the exception of them that believe, so with this further insight we realize that seeing God is a very big deal, and an experience that you have to be super pure and clean to have, but it is, barely, possible.

I really like the idea of being able to talk with God as we talk with our friends.  Not just the face to face part (although that is obviously super cool), but also just the friend part.  To think of God as our friend takes some of the anxiety out of the equation.  Being able to relax and talk with God and know that he is a friend and wants us to be happy... that's a powerful idea, and a powerful way to look at that relationship.  Of course, he isn't the type of friend that lets us get away with whatever we want, which is good.  He's the kind that spurs us to be better versions of ourselves, and to become more than we currently are.  He's the best kind of friend, and can be our best friend, if we are willing to open our hearts to him.  Today, let's do so.  Even if we don't have the privilege of seeing God face to face in this life, let's still talk to him as our friend, and act on his perfect advice.


  1. Did u say a friend? Ummm, Remember His yo Father He calls u first if he wants to talk to u.Ihope he does.Lol.Good insight thanks.

  2. He is our father, but he can also be our friend. For instance, in John 15:14 he says "Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you."


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