Deuteronomy 5:4 says, "the Lord spoke with Israel "FACE TO FACE" on the mount OUT OF THE MIDST OF THE FIRE...v.5. I (Moses) stood between the Lord and you at that time to show you the word of the Lord, for you were afraid because of the FIRE and you did not go up into the mount!"
All of Israel was there on the side of the mountain with Moses and the Lord and they did not recognize God's "FACE TO FACE" encounter with them. They recognized "the fire of God"... but did not recognize "God in the fire"... instead they said:
Deuteronomy 5:25 "For this great fire will consume us"... and v.27 "Moses you go near and hear all that the Lord our God will say; and we will hear and do it!"
Not all want to See God
Not everybody wants to see God. And because some are not interested in "seeing" God for whatever reason, they become more and more numb to the closeness of God. Many are simply young christians and have yet to mature in their walk with the Lord. Others are, for one reason or another, just flat out rejecting God. .Jesus called the Pharisees "hypocrites" because they could not discern the time they were in. They claimed to be the ones who knew God, yet they didn't recognize Him even when He was standing right in front of them! As sons of Abraham they claimed they knew God personally but were more interested in building their own kingdom.... not the Kingdom of God! He said to them, "You hypocrites. You can discern the face of the sky but cannot discern the time you are in". He was extremely critical with them only because they claimed they knew God but didn't. They claimed they could "see" yet they were filled with unbelief.
We don't want to miss God. We need not be like Israel saying "We see the cloud we see the pillar of fire but we see no form... that can't be God! We need to be careful what we are calling "Not God". Scripture teaches us "What eye has not seen and ear has not heard and has not even entered into the heart (mind) of man all that God has prepared for those who love Him and obey Him gratefully recognizing His benefits". I Corinthians 2:9
IT'S BEEN PUT WITHIN OUR GRASP TO KNOW THE