What a startling statement. God Himself hides His sovereignty. Now, I can understand why God would hide His beauty, because any picture is made up of both light strokes and dark strokes. It even makes sense that He would hide His plans and purposes because in our finite, ignorant minds we might not understand the benefit found in them. But what sense is to be found in the hiding of His sovereignty?
The most startling aspect of this statement is the deliberate nature of God’s veiling. If this verse simply said that the mind of man cannot understand the mind of God – that His thoughts are higher than our thoughts – then we would certainly agree with the truth of that statement. But it is God who describes and determines the truth of His unfathomableness. In fact, there are two acts that the Almighty uses to describe His concealment. At first “He covers the face of His throne.” Then He “spreads His cloud over it.” It is an intricate act of veiling, and it bothers us.
What is it then that is actually veiled? Is it the throne of God that is veiled? No, it is only “the face of His throne.” What is “the face of His throne?” It is that which looks forward. It is the sovereignty of God that is seen in advance, and He says that He will not unveil that. He will unveil the side of His throne giving strength for our present need. He will unveil the back of His throne allowing us to see His working in retrospect. But He will not unveil for us the face of His throne. In fact, He spreads a cloud over that future glory.
What a benefit and blessing. My Father doesn’t force me to come to Him. He wants me to come because of love, by my own free will. That’s why He covers the face of His throne and spreads a cloud over it. He does this for our good, for what man could resist such glory? What man would be able to refuse the face of God? To see such a vision would no doubt rob man of his freedom. Who wouldn’t climb God’s holy hill if it were always crowned with light? For if there is too much light then there is no way that our love could be tested or even offered.
It’s easy to seek God when we see the emerald shimmering and the sapphire blazing in His rainbow. But what would happen if the rainbow were removed, the sapphire stopped blazing and the emerald ceased to shimmer? What if the face of His throne were concealed, covered by a cloud? Would we still seek Him? If Heaven announced that there would be no judgment seat, the books would not be open and there would be no dividing to the right hand and the
left, would virtue still be as beautiful to you? Would you choose her if she were so plainly clothed? Would you love her if she weren’t not wearing His adoption ring? Would you marry her without any material dowry? Would you hold and cherish her knowing that there would be no hope of reward? Would you work for her, labor for her, sacrifice for her if there wasn’t never to be heard the words uttered, “Well done, good and faithful servant”? If so, then the silence from Heaven’s throne is vindicated and you may thank your Father that He has hidden the face of His throne from you.