Consider how far down the glory of God had to be distilled and diluted and redistilled and rediluted before it could even begin to be bearable to the eyes and experience of common humanity. Moses in Exodus 33 couldn't look on the face of Yahweh and live. So he was placed in the cleft of the rock(which represents Christ whose body was "cleft' on the cross)where he would only see the back part of God. Even so he came from that toned-down encounter with Yahweh with a face so radiant the people could not bear to look upon it. So Moses couldn't look into the fullness of the face of that glory but only at it's reflection, after which the people couldn't look on the fullness even of that reflection but had to wind it down another notch by placing a further veil over it! They then saw a reflection of a reflection and still had to look away!
When I travelled to visit my brother yesterday I left in the early morning and drove directly and hazardously into the blinding sun of early morning, almost forcing me to pull off the road. But when I returned that night I drove directly into a near-full moon, which was much more pleasant since it only reflected the sunlight as it helped to illuminate the landscape and the highway.
"At present we are--- looking at puzzling reflections in a mirror. (because that is all we can handle!) the time will come when we will see reality whole and face to face." (1 cor 12 v. 13, J.B. Phillips translation)
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