The Bible is comprised of 66 books, written over a period of about 1500 years. But similar to a treatise written by a single author, it contains themes which extend throughout all its pages. One such, which extends from Genesis through to Revelation, is that of ‘the cloud’.
After the flood, when the rain had stopped, Noah and his family left the ark and made a sacrifice to the Lord. In turn, God made a covenant with Noah and as a token of this said:
“I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth.” (Genesis 9:13)
And since then, God has often been associated with a cloud.
In Exodus, when the Hebrews were leaving Egypt, it is said that:
…the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way…
Later on it says that:
…the glory of the Lord appeared in the cloud.
When Moses later went up to the mount to meet with God…
…a thick cloud covered the mount.
(Exodus 24:15, KJV)
The Lord said to Moses:
“Behold, I come to you in the thick cloud that the people may hear…and believe you forever.” (Exodus 19:9)
Later on, when Moses entered the tabernacle…
…the pillar of cloud descended and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the Lord talked with Moses. (Exodus 33:9)
Still later on,
…Moses was not able to enter the tabernacle…because the cloud rested above it,
and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. (Exodus 40:35)
In Kings, the Bible states that:…when the priests came out of the holy place,
that the cloud filled the house of the Lord, so that the priests could not continue ministering because of the cloud; for the glory of the Lord filled the house of the Lord.(1 Kings 8:10-11)
“The Lord said He would dwell in the dark cloud.” (1 Kings 8:12)
Job, speaking of the majesty of God, said:
He covers the face of His throne, And spreads His cloud over it.(Job 26:9)
And it is not only in the Old Testament that we hear of God being in the cloud. At the time of Jesus’ transfiguration, Mark relates that:…a cloud came and overshadowed them; and a voice came out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son. Hear Him!”(Mark 9:7)
When Luke talks about the coming of the Son of Man, he states: Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. (Luke 21:27)
Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. (Acts 1:9)
And it ends in Revelation with this:…behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man…and in His hand a sharp sickle… So He who sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped.(Revelation 14:14&16)
And so God is associated with a cloud from the book of Genesis right through to the book of Revelation. It shows in another way how the Bible is unified from beginning to end, even though it is composed of many books written over a long period of time.
And it is in such context that we should think about it.