Exodus 34:34
But when Moses went in before the LORD to speak with him, he took the vail off, until he came out. And he came out, and spake unto the children of Israel that which he was commanded.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Exodus 34:34. When he went before the Lord, he put off the veil — Every veil must be thrown aside when we go to present ourselves unto the Lord. This signified also, as it is explained, 2 Corinthians 3:16, that when a soul turns to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away, that with open face it may behold his glory.

34:28-35 Near and spiritual communion with God improves the graces of a renewed and holy character. Serious godliness puts a lustre upon a man's countenance, such as commands esteem and affection. The vail which Moses put on, marked the obscurity of that dispensation, compared with the gospel dispensation of the New Testament. It was also an emblem of the natural vail on the hearts of men respecting spiritual things. Also the vail that was and is upon the nation of Israel, which can only be taken away by the Spirit of the Lord showing to them Christ, as the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. Fear and unbelief would put the vail before us, they would hinder our free approach to the mercy-seat above. We should spread our wants, temporal and spiritual, fully before our heavenly Father; we should tell him our hinderances, struggles, trails, and temptations; we should acknowledge our offences.Moses went in - i. e. to the tent of meeting. 33. he put a veil on his face—That veil was with the greatest propriety removed when speaking with the Lord, for every one appears unveiled to the eye of Omniscience; but it was replaced on returning to the people—and this was emblematic of the dark and shadowy character of that dispensation (2Co 3:13, 14). No text from Poole on this verse.

But when Moses went in before the Lord to speak with him,.... Went into the tabernacle to converse with him, to pray unto him, and inquire about any matter of difficulty respecting the people of Israel he was concerned for, which he often did:

he took the vail off until he came out: and so when men are truly converted, and turn to the Lord, the vail of darkness and unbelief is removed, and the true light shines, in which they see things in another light than they did before; and when they come into his presence, they come with hearts opened and unveiled, all things being naked and open to him with whom they have to do; and particularly saints under the Gospel dispensation, with an open face, as in a glass, behold the glory of the Lord; and when they get to heaven, they will then see face to face, and know as they are known, 2 Corinthians 3:16,

and he came out, and spake unto the children of Israel that which he was commanded; this respects not the present time of his coming down from the mount, or out of the tabernacle with the law and commands now given, for these he had already declared; but after times, and all such times when he went in to the Lord to inquire of him his mind and will concerning certain things, in which the people wanted information, when, upon his return, he acquainted them with whatsoever the Lord ordered to be done.

But when Moses went in {m} before the LORD to speak with him, he took the vail off, until he came out. And he came out, and spake unto the children of Israel that which he was commanded.

(m) Which was in the tabernacle of the congregation.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
34. went in before Jehovah] viz. into the Tent of Meeting (which is here presupposed): cf. Exodus 25:22, Numbers 7:89.

Comp. 2 Corinthians 3:7-18, noticing (1) that St Paul interprets the narrative allegorically, assigning as the reason why Moses used to put on the veil, not that the Israelites might not constantly be beholding the glow on Moses’ face, but that they might not see its gradual waning away (v. 13), which St Paul regards as a type of the passing away of their own dispensation; and (2) that St Paul’s key-words in the passage, δόξα, δεδόξασται (‘glory,’ ‘hath been made glorious’), are suggested by the LXX. rend. of ‘shone’ in vv. 29, 35, δεδόξασται. The narrative is a beautiful symbolical expression of the truth that close converse with God illumines the soul with a Divine radiance, and that those who ‘with unveiled face’ behold spiritually as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are gradually through its influence transformed more and more completely into His likeness (2 Corinthians 3:18).

34, 35. But whenever Moses went inhe would take …; and he would come out, and speak …; and the children of Israel would see …, and Moses would put, &c.] The tenses are throughout frequentative, describing Moses’ habitual practice.

Exodus 34:34The sight of the glory of Jehovah, though only of the back or reflection of it, produced such an effect upon Moses' face, that the skin of it shone, though without Moses observing it. When he came down from the mountain with the tables of the law in his hand, and the skin of his face shone אתּו בּדבּרו, i.e., on account of his talking with God, Aaron and the people were afraid to go near him when they saw the brightness of his face. But Moses called them to him, - Viz. first of all Aaron and the princes of the congregation to speak to them, and then all the people to give them the commandments of Jehovah; but on doing this (Exodus 34:33), he put a veil upon (before) his face, and only took it away when he went in before Jehovah to speak with Him, and then, when he came out (from the Lord out of the tabernacle, of course after the erection of the tabernacle), he made known His commands to the people. But while doing this, he put the veil upon his face again, and always wore it in his ordinary intercourse with the people (Exodus 34:34, Exodus 34:35). This reflection of the splendour thrown back by the glory of God was henceforth to serve as the most striking proof of the confidential relation in which Moses stood to Jehovah, and to set forth the glory of the office which Moses filled. The Apostle Paul embraces this view in 2 Corinthians 3:7., and lays stress upon the fact that the glory was to be done away, which he was quite justified in doing, although nothing is said in the Old Testament about the glory being transient, from the simple fact that Moses died. The apostle refers to it for the purpose of contrasting the perishable glory of the law with the far higher and imperishable glory of the Gospel. At the same time he regards the veil which covered Moses' face as a symbol of the obscuring of the truth revealed in the Old Testament. But this does not exhaust the significance of this splendour. The office could only confer such glory upon the possessor by virtue of the glory of the blessings which it contained, and conveyed to those for whom it was established. Consequently, the brilliant light on Moses' face also set forth the glory of the Old Covenant, and was intended both for Moses and the people as a foresight and pledge of the glory to which Jehovah had called, and would eventually exalt, the people of His possession.
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