Moses and Adam in the presence of God


I am reading Moses 1 this morning. I was stuck by how similar Moses’s experience was to Adam, or at least to the way we tell the story of Adam in the scriptures/temple endowment.

Moses is talked to face to face, directly, as a son, with much love.

Moses is shown the creation of the world, “upon which he was created” (verse 8).

Moses is tempted by Satan

Moses, however, has a different experience with Satan. He tells Satan, “Who art thou? For behold, I am a son of God, in the similitude of his Only Begotten; and where is thy glory, that I should worship thee? (13) For behold, I could not look upon God, except his glory should come upon me, and I were transfigured before him. But I can look upon thee in the natural man. (14)”

Moses was a fallen man, who could only be in God’s presence by a transfiguration. Adam, on the other hand, was not a fallen man and (I suppose) did not need this transfiguration. Being in God’s presence was normal.

Hence, when Satan came to tempt Adam and Eve, they had not experienced life without this glory. They couldn’t discern between God’s glory and Satan’s lack of glory. In other words, since they were not “natural,” they could not use Moses’s logic: “For behold, I could not look upon God, except his glory should come upon me, and I were transfigured before him. But I can look upon thee in the natural man.”

Satan tries to deceive Moses

Moses is post-fall, and has the knowledge of Good and Evil. “And I can judge between thee and God” (15) he says. In both cases, Satan is subtle and seeks to beguile; but Moses has the advantage of judgment, gained by Adam in the garden.

God is shown to be more powerful than Satan

In Moses 4, this shows up through God cursing Satan. In the temple, we have other similar moments where Satan is shown to be subject to God’s power. In Moses 1, it comes when Moses calls upon God, then declares: “In the name of the Only Begotten, depart hence, Satan. (21) And it came to pass that Satan cried with a loud voice, with weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth; and he departed hence, even from the presence of Moses, that he beheld him not. (22)”

In addition, Adam and Moses both have visions of the inhabitants of the earth

Moses: See Moses 1:24-28 “Moses lifted up his eyes unto heaven, being filled with the Holy Ghost, which beareth record of the Father and the Son (24) … And he beheld also the inhabitants thereof, and there was not a soul which he beheld not; and he discerned them by the Spirit of God (28).”

Adam: And Moses 4:9-10 “And in that day the Holy Ghost fell upon Adam, which beareth record of the Father and the Son, saying: I am the Only Begotten of the Father from the beginning, henceforth and forever, that as thou hast fallen thou mayest be redeemed, and all mankind, even as many as will (9). And in that day Adam blessed God and was filled, and began to prophesy concerning all the families of the earth (10).”

 

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