Exodus 33:3

3 Go up to the land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you, because you are a stiff-necked people and I might destroy you on the way.”

Exodus 33:3 in Other Translations

KJV
3 Unto a land flowing with milk and honey: for I will not go up in the midst of thee; for thou art a stiffnecked people: lest I consume thee in the way.
ESV
3 Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey; but I will not go up among you, lest I consume you on the way, for you are a stiff-necked people."
NLT
3 Go up to this land that flows with milk and honey. But I will not travel among you, for you are a stubborn and rebellious people. If I did, I would surely destroy you along the way.”
MSG
3 It's a land flowing with milk and honey. But I won't be with you in person - you're such a stubborn, hard-headed people! - lest I destroy you on the journey."
CSB
3 [Go up] to a land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you because you are a stiff-necked people; otherwise, I might destroy you on the way."

Exodus 33:3 Meaning and Commentary

Exodus 33:3

Unto a land flowing with milk and honey
Abounding with all the necessaries and good things of life, a description of the land of Canaan frequently made, see ( Exodus 3:8 ) :

for I will not go up in the midst of thee;
would not grant them his presence in so near, visible, and respectable a manner as he had before done, though he would not utterly forsake them: the tabernacle was before in the midst of the camp, that is, that which was erected until the large one, ordered to be made, was finished, but now it was removed without the camp, ( Exodus 33:7 )

for thou art a stiffnecked people; (See Gill on Exodus 32:9):

lest I consume them in the way;
in the way to the land of Canaan, and so never get there; the meaning is, that the Lord being in the midst of them, their sin would be the more aggravated to be committed in his presence, before his face; and the glory of his majesty would require that immediate notice be taken of it, and just punishment inflicted; so that by this step God both consulted his own honour and their safety.

Exodus 33:3 In-Context

1 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Leave this place, you and the people you brought up out of Egypt, and go up to the land I promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants.’
2 I will send an angel before you and drive out the Canaanites, Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites.
3 Go up to the land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you, because you are a stiff-necked people and I might destroy you on the way.”
4 When the people heard these distressing words, they began to mourn and no one put on any ornaments.
5 For the LORD had said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites, ‘You are a stiff-necked people. If I were to go with you even for a moment, I might destroy you. Now take off your ornaments and I will decide what to do with you.’ ”

Cross References 3

  • 1. S Exodus 3:8
  • 2. Exodus 32:9; Acts 7:51
  • 3. S Exodus 32:10