With Bill Cosby once again in the news, now facing unseemly accusations, it got me thinking back to a more innocent time when the name Cosby was synonymous with family.
I remember watching the very first episode of The Cosby Show with my mom and six brothers and sisters. We laughed hysterically as Mr. Huxtable used Monopoly money to teach Theo a lesson about “regular people.”
Then he walked into the hallway where his two daughters were banging on the bathroom door in towels with shampoo in their hair. “Come here,” Mr. Huxtable said sternly. The girls didn’t move. “Come heeeere,” he insisted. “Here. Come heeere.” The girls stood frozen. “Come heeeere!”
It’s funny because it’s true.
If you are a parent, you probably have lived that scene. You tell your kids, “Come here,” and they don’t come. They hear the tone of your voice. They see the stern look. They know they are in trouble. So they freeze. They don’t want to come any closer.
When the children of Israel arrived at Mt. Sinai, they watched in horror and amazement as God’s glory descended upon the mountain in smoke and fire, in lightning and thunder, in earthquakes and trumpet blasts.
From the billowing smoke and blazing fire God called to Moses, “Come here.”
Would you have gone? Seeing God’s glory can be scary. It can be scary because it’s the glory of a holy God – a God who hates sin and always punishes it. It can be scary because it shows the awesome power of our holy God who can squash each of us as if we were a tiny bug.
If you were Moses, would you have gone up that mountain? Moses did. God said, “Come here,” and Moses went. Moses wasn’t afraid. Moses didn’t look at God as an angry parent who was going to punish him. He saw him as his loving Father and Friend.
Moses had heard God’s promises. Moses had seen God’s grace. He trusted in the Savior who was to come. Though Moses had sinned against God, God had forgiven him. God was inviting Moses to come and bask in his glory.
So often when we have done something bad or are living in a way God doesn’t want, we try to run away from God. We stay away from church. We stop praying. We don’t want to face God. We don’t want to see his glory. We don’t want to see his holiness. We don’t want to see his power.
Yet, God never stops inviting. He calls to us through his Word, “Come here” – not as a frowning Father prepared to punish, but as a loving daddy, with his arms wide open. He invites us to come to church and hear how he has forgiven us. He invites us to come and hear how Jesus suffered God’s holy anger in our place. He invites us to come and hear about the heaven which he won for us.
You see, one day you will look up and see God’s glory. You will hear God’s voice say to you, “Come here!” Because of Jesus, you don’t have to be afraid. Because of Jesus, one day you will go up the mountain and you will bask in God’s glory forever.